The main aim of this review was to compare the safety and efficacy of the Da Vinci Surgical System (DVSS) and conventional laparoscopic surgery (CLS) in different types of abdominal intervention.
Summary of Background Data:
DVSS is an emerging laparoscopic technology. The surgeon directs the robotic arms of the system through a console by means of hand controls and pedals, making use of a stereoscopic viewing system. DVSS is currently being used in general, urological, gynecologic, and cardiothoracic surgery.
This systematic review analyses the best scientific evidence available regarding the safety and efficacy of DVSS in abdominal surgery. The results found were subjected to meta-analysis whenever possible.
Thirty-one studies, 6 of them randomized control trials, involving 2166 patients that compared DVSS and CLS were examined. The procedures undertaken were fundoplication (9 studies, one also examining cholecystectomy), Heller myotomy (3 studies), gastric bypass (4), gastrectomy (2), bariatric surgery (1), cholecystectomy (4), splenectomy (1), colorectal resection (7), and rectopexy (1). DVSS was found to be associated with fewer Heller myotomy-related perforations, a more rapid intestinal recovery time after gastrectomy—and therefore a shorter hospital stay, a shorter hospital stay following cholecystectomy (although the duration of surgery was longer), longer colorectal resection surgery times, and a larger number of conversions to open surgery during gastric bypass.
The publications reviewed revealed DVSS to offer certain advantages with respect to Heller myotomy, gastrectomy, and cholecystectomy. However, these results should be interpreted with caution until randomized clinical trials are performed and, with respect to oncologic indications, studies include variables such as survival.