Robotic totally endoscopic beating-heart bypass to the right coronary artery: first worldwide experience

Eur J Cardiothorac Surg. 2020 Mar 1;57(3):529-534. doi: 10.1093/ejcts/ezz283.


Objectives: Left coronary vessels are the usual targets in totally endoscopic coronary artery bypass (TECAB). Grafting of the right coronary artery (RCA) has been limited using this approach because of anatomic and technical difficulties. We report a first series of robotic beating-heart TECAB to the RCA via a right-chest approach.

Methods: From July 2013 to April 2019, patients who underwent robotic beating-heart TECAB with the right internal mammary artery to the RCA were reviewed. Port placement in the right chest mirrored standard left-sided ports. Indications for right internal mammary artery to RCA bypass were RCA disease not amenable to percutaneous intervention and anomalous origin of the RCA.

Results: Right internal mammary artery-RCA bypass was performed in 16 patients (mean age 60.6 ± 13.5, 75% male). All cases were completed without conversion to sternotomy or mini-thoracotomy. Cardiopulmonary bypass was required in 1 patient to expose the posterior descending artery. Mean procedure time was 223 ± 49 min, with half of the patients extubated in the operating room (50%). Mean intraoperative transit-time graft flow was 87.0 ± 19.3 ml/min, and a pulsatility index of 1.2 ± 0.2. Mean length of stay was 2.3 ± 1.2 days. No mortality was observed at mean follow-up time of 20.6 months. One patient required repeat RCA revascularization for progression of native disease 43.7 months after the surgery.

Conclusions: Robotic beating-heart TECAB for isolated RCA disease is a feasible operation in selected patients. This technique is possible even for the posterior descending artery.

Keywords: Anomalous origin of the right coronary artery; Isolated right coronary artery bypass; Totally endoscopic coronary artery bypass.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cardiopulmonary Bypass
  • Coronary Artery Bypass
  • Coronary Artery Disease* / surgery
  • Endoscopy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Robotic Surgical Procedures*
  • Treatment Outcome