PROVIDENCE – When a woman requires gynecologic surgery, she and her surgeon have several minimally invasive surgical options, including robotic surgery. But questions have arisen about the potential overuse of robotic surgery and its advantages over traditional laparotomy for hysterectomy.
A clinical opinion by Dr. Charles Rardin, a urogynecologist in the Division of Urogynecology and Reconstructive Surgery and director of the Robotic Surgery Program for Women at Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island, director of Minimally Invasive Surgery at Care New England, and associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, entitled “The debate over robotics in benign gynecology,” was recently published in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.
“Robotic surgery certainly provides some advantages to some surgeons and has contributed to a decline in laparotomy (large incision) rates for hysterectomy,” said Rardin in a release. “But robotic surgery for benign gynecology needs to be considered as just one of several forms of minimally invasive surgery that can be used to provide the best care to patients.”
Rardin explained that specific features of the patient (e.g., obesity), the surgeon’s level of experience with laparoscopic surgery, and the possibility of significant and technically challenging suturing, may make the robotic approach preferable over laparoscopic or vaginal surgery.