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Scand J Surg. 2009;98(2):110-9.

Robotic-assisted laparoscopic surgery in pediatric urology: an update.

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  • 1Division of Urology, the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19107, USA.


Laparoscopic procedures for urological diseases in children, such as nephrectomy, pyeloplasty and orchiopexy, have proven to be safe and effective with outcome comparable to the open procedure. However, main drawback has been the relatively steep learning curve for this procedure because of technical difficulties of suturing and anastomosis. More recently, robotic-assisted laparoscopic surgery (RAS) has gained enormous popularity in adult urology and is increasingly being adopted around the world; however, few pediatric urology series have been reported. RAS has several advantages over conventional laparoscopic surgery, with the main advantage being simplification and precision of exposure and suturing because of allowing movements of the robotic arm in real time with increased degree of freedom and magnified 3-dimentional view. These features render RAS ideal for complex reconstructive surgery in a pediatric urological population. This review discusses the role of RAS in pediatric urology, and provides some technical aspects of RAS and a critical summary of current knowledge on its indications and outcome. Almost all operations that are classically performed as open or conventional laparoscopic reconstructive surgery for children with urological anomalies could be replaced by RAS, which may be established as an alternative minimally invasive surgery in the future.

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