Robotic ambulatory colorectal resections: a systematic review

J Robot Surg. 2024 May 7;18(1):202. doi: 10.1007/s11701-024-01961-3.


Colorectal surgery has progressed greatly via minimally invasive techniques, laparoscopic and robotic. With the advent of ERAS protocols, patient recovery times have greatly shortened, allowing for same day discharges (SDD). Although SDD have been explored through laparoscopic colectomy reviews, no reviews surrounding robotic ambulatory colorectal resections (RACrR) exist to date. A systematic search was carried out across three databases and internet searches. Data were selected and extracted by two independent reviewers. Inclusion criteria included robotic colorectal resections with a length of hospital stay of less than one day or 24 h. 4 studies comprising 136 patients were retrieved. 56% of patients were female and were aged between 21 and 89 years. Main surgery indications were colorectal cancer and recurrent sigmoid diverticulitis (43% each). Most patients had low anterior resections (48%). Overall, there was a 4% complication rate postoperatively, with only 1 patient requiring readmission due to postoperative urinary retention (< 1%). Patient selection criteria involved ASA score cut-offs, nutritional status, and specific health conditions. Protocols employed shared similarities including ERAS education, transabdominal plane blocks, early removal of urinary catheters, an opioid-sparing regime, and encouraged early oral intake and ambulation prior to discharge. All 4 studies had various follow-up methods involving telemedicine, face-to-face consultations, and virtual ward teams. RACrRs is safe and feasible in a highly specific patient population; however, further high-quality studies with larger sample sizes are needed to draw more significant conclusions. Several limitations included small sample size and the potential of recall bias due to retrospective nature of 2 studies.

Keywords: Ambulatory; Colorectal surgery; Minimally invasive surgery; Robotic surgery.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Ambulatory Surgical Procedures* / methods
  • Colectomy / methods
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / surgery
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Laparoscopy / methods
  • Laparoscopy / statistics & numerical data
  • Length of Stay* / statistics & numerical data
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology
  • Postoperative Complications / etiology
  • Robotic Surgical Procedures* / methods
  • Robotic Surgical Procedures* / statistics & numerical data
  • Young Adult