Successful robotic-assisted kidney transplant

Welcome back to our Blog, we have a great post today provided by our medical newsletters team-leader, Lawrence Miller. Lawrence is the editor for Medical Industry Week, please read on…NTUH joins selective club that have achieved successful robotic-assisted kidney transplant.An organ transplant team at National Taiwan University Hospital (NTUH) has become the first to carry out a robotic-assisted kidney transplant procedure in Asia.

The procedure involved the use of Intuitive Surgical’s da Vinci robotic surgery system; an FDA-cleared system that is approved in the US for use in urological, general laparoscopic, gynaecologic laparoscopic, selected transoral otolaryngology, general thoracoscopic and thoracoscopically-assisted cardiotomy surgical procedures.

Whilst robotic surgery has been used in all kinds of operations on human, robotic surgery has not gained widespread use in organ transplantation, due to insufficient maneuvering space caused by the implanted organ, as well as the requirement for a precise vascular suture technique and risk of hemorrhage. So far, only a few cases from European and American countries have been reported in literature.The traditional open transplant requires a 15 to 20 cm incision, but causes more pain and discomfort for patients, and can trigger wound hernia due to high tension.

In order to reduce post surgery discomfort for patients, the NTUH organ transplant team has been working developing a robotic surgery system for organ transplantation.

In late July, NTUH’s organ transplant team successfully completed the milestone procedure. The surgery requires a few small incisions and efficiently decreases the possibility of complications. The team believes that accomplishment of this robotic-assisted kidney transplant is an important milestone for organ transplant development.

The da Vinci system is used to used to mirror the movement of the surgeon’s hands using two controller sticks. The system offers high-definition 3D vision and magnified views. Additionally, in comparison to traditional surgical techniques it is regarded as minimally invasive, offering the patients the benefits of rapid recovery and a small incision, whilst lowering the potential for complications.