by Dr. Trace Curry
A lot of hype in the media has been devoted to robotic surgery as of late. Robots have been employed in surgical weight loss operation such as the gastric sleeve for several years now. When these procedures are done, the surgeon is typically sitting at a console, sort of like playing a video game, while the robot actually moves the instruments inside the patient’s abdomen.
There have been no good studies which show any improvement in outcomes with robotic bariatric surgery vs. traditional laparoscopic surgery. Studies have clearly shown increased expense and longer OR time to perform the exact same procedure that is done with minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery.
Time will tell, eventually technology may advance to the point where there the robot may enable a surgeon to do a gastric sleeve through a single small incision. Until that time there seems to be no benefit in my opinion.