TAIPEI, TAIWAN ( - Dr. Ravi Munver and his group looked retrospectively at their 12-years experience performing renal surgery and described how practice patterns have changed significantly with the advent of the surgical robot.

Robotic surgery started in 2001 and clearly gained significant footing during their study time period. They reviewed 2 119 procedures and found an increasing number of minimally invasive surgeries performed, moving from radical to partial nephrectomies. Over time, surgeries became increasingly more complex as they noticed an increase in mean tumor size from 1.7cm to 3.8cm between 2008 and 2013, and nephrometry scores increased from 5.3 to 7.6 over the same time period. Partial nephrectomy became dominant over radical nephrectomy in 2007.


wceWhen asked which surgeons tended to convert to robotic surgery, Dr. Ravi Munver, the principle investigator of the study commented,  “Open surgeons seemed to stay with open techniques.”

He noticed, however, that there were two types of transitions into robotic surgery. “Surgeons who did open renal surgery began doing robotic prostates and those surgeons transitioned to robotic partial nephrectomies. Others who were primarily doing laparscopic partial nephrectomies seemed to convert to robotic surgery as well."

The surgical robot has had a dramatic impact on minimally invasive renal surgery, and the authors believe this is likely to continue.

Presented by Jordan Hernandez, Samuel Alv, 
Leonard Glickman, Mutahar Ahmed, 
Gregory Lovallo, Michael Degen, 
Ihor Sawczuk, and Ravi Munver at the 32nd World Congress of Endourology & SWL - September 3 - 7, 2014 - Taipei, Taiwan

Written by Adam Kaplan,MD, chief resident, Department of Urology, School of Medicine, University of California-Irvine, and medical writer for 


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