Robotic Surgery, the First 100 Cases: Where Do We Go from Here?

Heart Surg Forum. 2004 Jan 1;7(1):1-4.


Abstract Background: Since the robot-assisted cardiac surgery program at this center was initiated in September 1998 the results have been regularly critically evaluated. We report a retrospective review of the first 100 robotic procedures and their evolution. Methods: Between September 1998 and May 2001, 146 patients underwent robot-assisted procedures. All procedures were performed using the Aesop robotically controlled camera or the Zeus robotic system. A harmonic scalpel was used for all internal thoracic artery (ITA) dissections whether the dissections were performed manually or with the Zeus robotic system. Results: There were 123 closed-heart and 23 open-heart procedures, which included 8 atrial-septal defect repairs, 11 mitral valve repairs, 4 mitral valve replacements, 57 Aesop ITA takedowns, 68 Zeus ITA takedowns, and 13 totally endoscopic coronary artery bypass grafts. Graft patency in Aesop and Zeus ITA takedown groups was 96%. All the patients were New York Heart Association class I after their procedures. Conclusion: With the development of surgical robots, it has been possible to perform endoscopic cardiac surgery for selected cases. Future directions will be demonstrated, including telementoring, telesurgery, and Zeus-assisted initiatives in cardiac surgery and other surgical disciplines.