To report our technique for and experience with robot-assisted laparoscopic radical cystectomy (RARC) with orthotopic neobladder (ON) formation in a cohort of bladder cancer patients.
Materials and Methods
Between December 2007 and December 2011, a total of 35 patients underwent RARC. The patients' mean age was 63.3 years and their mean body mass index was 23.7 kg/m2. Thirty patients had a clinical stage of T2 or higher. Postoperative mean follow-up duration was 25.5 months. In 5 patients, a 4-cm midline infraumbilical skin incision was made for an ileal conduit (IC) and the stoma formation was similar to the open procedure. In 30 patients undergoing the ON procedure, the skin for specimen removal and extracorporeal enterocystoplasty was incised infraumbilically in the early 5 cases with redocking (ON-I) and suprapubically in the latter 25 cases without redocking (ON-S).
The mean operative times of the IC, ON-I, and ON-S groups were 442.5, 646.0, and 531.3 minutes, respectively (p=0.001). Mean console and lymph node dissection time were not significantly different between the groups. Mean urinary diversion times in each group were 68.8, 125.0, and 118.8 minutes, respectively (p=0.001). In the comparison between the ON-I and ON-S group, only operative time was significant. Four patients required a blood transfusion. We had no cases of intraabdominal organ injury or open conversion. Thiry-three patients (94.2%) had a pathologic stage of T2 or higher. Two patients (5.7%) had lymph node-positive disease. Postoperative complications included ileus (n=4), stricture in the uretero-ileal junction (n=2), and vesicovaginal fistula (n=1).
Our robotic neobladder-suprapubic incision without redocking procedure is easier and more rapid than that of infraumbilical incision with redocking.