The use of the robotic platform for primary inguinal hernia repair has been a controversial topic. In this issue of JAMA Surgery, the multicenter, pilot clinical trial by Prabhu et al1 is, to our knowledge, the first of its kind to compare outcomes of laparoscopic and robotic transabdominal preperitoneal inguinal hernia repair. The study showed no differences in postoperative outcomes between the 2 techniques, with the robotic approach incurring significantly greater operative times, total costs, and surgeon frustration. Despite the limitations of the small sample size and potential variations in the proficiency of the participating surgeons, the authors concluded that the use of the robotic platform is not recommended for primary, unilateral inguinal hernias.
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Liu N, Greenberg JA. Robotics vs Laparoscopy—Are They Truly Rivals? JAMA Surg. Published online March 18, 2020. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2020.0052
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