Perioperative Risk Assessment in Robotic General Surgery: Lessons Learned From 884 Cases at a Single Institution | Health Care Safety | JAMA Surgery | JAMA Network
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Original Article
August 2012

Perioperative Risk Assessment in Robotic General Surgery: Lessons Learned From 884 Cases at a Single Institution

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Divisions of General, Minimally Invasive, and Robotic Surgery (Drs Buchs, Addeo, Bianco, Ayloo, Elli, and Giulianotti) and Transplantation (Drs Gorodner, Oberholzer, and Benedetti), and Department of Surgery (Drs Buchs, Addeo, Bianco, Gorodner, Ayloo, Elli, Oberholzer, Benedetti, and Giulianotti), University of Illinois at Chicago.

Arch Surg. 2012;147(8):701-708. doi:10.1001/archsurg.2012.496

Objective To assess factors associated with morbidity and mortality following the use of robotics in general surgery.

Design Case series.

Setting University of Illinois at Chicago.

Patients and Intervention Eight hundred eighty-four consecutive patients who underwent a robotic procedure in our institution between April 2007 and July 2010.

Main Outcomes Measures Perioperative morbidity and mortality.

Results During the study period, 884 patients underwent a robotic procedure. The conversion rate was 2%, the mortality rate was 0.5%, and the overall postoperative morbidity rate was 16.7%. The reoperation rate was 2.4%. Mean length of stay was 4.5 days (range, 0.2-113 days). In univariate analysis, several factors were associated with increased morbidity and included either patient-related (cardiovascular and renal comorbidities, American Society of Anesthesiologists score ≥3, body mass index [calculated as weight in kilograms divided by height in meters squared] <30, age ≥70 years, and malignant disease) or procedure-related (blood loss ≥500 mL, transfusion, multiquadrant operation, and advanced procedure) factors. In multivariate analysis, advanced procedure, multiquadrant surgery, malignant disease, body mass index of less than 30, hypertension, and transfusion were factors significantly associated with a higher risk for complications. American Society of Anesthesiologists score of 3 or greater, age 70 years or older, cardiovascular comorbidity, and blood loss of 500 mL or more were also associated with increased risk for mortality.

Conclusions Use of the robotic approach for general surgery can be achieved safely with low morbidity and mortality. Several risk factors have been identified as independent causes for higher morbidity and mortality. These can be used to identify patients at risk before and during the surgery and, in the future, to develop a scoring system for the use of robotic general surgery.