Robotic-assisted lung resection for malignant disease

Casandra A. Anderson, Minia Hellan, Andres Falebella, Clayton S. Lau, Fredric W. Grannis, Kemp H. Kernstine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: There have been few reports of the use of robotic surgery to resect lung malignancies. Feasibility and safety of robotic lung resection for malignant lung lesions will be assessed by performing a retrospective analysis. METHODS: Between September 2004 and November 2006, 21 patients (11 male and 10 female patients) underwent robotic lung resection. Twenty resections were performed for primary nonsmall cell lung cancer and two for metastatic lesions. One patient had bilateral resections for two primary tumors. Fourteen lobectomies, five segementectomies, one wedge resection, and two bilobectomies were performed. Seventy-two percent of operative procedures included mediastinoscopy and/or bronchoscopy at the time of resection. RESULTS: Thirty-day mortality and conversion rate was 0%. The median operating room time and estimated blood loss was 3.6 hours and 100 mL, respectively. The median intensive care unit and total length of hospital stays were 2 and 4 days, respectively. Chest tubes were removed after a median of 2.0 days. The complication rate was 27%, which included atrial fibrillation, need for postoperative bronchoscopy, and pneumonia. The median tumor size and number of lymph nodes harvested was 2.3 cm and 16, respectively. All resection margins were negative. Median follow-up time was 9.8 months, with no local recurrences at this time. CONCLUSION: Robotic lung resection appears safe and feasible and allows for significant lymph node retrieval, offers short hospital stays and low morbidity for patients undergoing surgical resection of lung malignancies. Future studies are needed to define the role of robotic surgery in lung cancer treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)254-258
Number of pages5
JournalInnovations: Technology and Techniques in Cardiothoracic and Vascular Surgery
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2007


  • Lung cancer
  • Minimally invasive lung resection
  • Robotic lobectomy
  • Robotic technology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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