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Trends in Positioning for Robotic Prostatectomy: Results From a Survey of the Endourological Society

  • Wayne, George1
  • Wei, Jeff2
  • Atri, Elias2
  • Wong, Vivian2
  • Garcia-Gil, Maurilio1
  • Pereira, Jorge1
  • Nieder, Alan M1
  • Bhandari, Akshay1
  • 1 Urology, Mount Sinai Medical Center, Miami Beach, USA
  • 2 Urology, Florida International University Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine, Miami, USA
Published Article
Cureus, Inc.
Publication Date
Jan 11, 2021
DOI: 10.7759/cureus.12628
PMID: 33585117
PMCID: PMC7872490
PubMed Central
  • Urology
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Purpose: most robot-assisted laparoscopic prostatectomies (RALP) are performed with the patient in lithotomy, carrying risks of positioning-related complications. Newer robot models have allowed for supine positioning, potentially avoiding these pitfalls. We gauged the current sentiment on patient positioning among surgeons who perform robot-assisted surgery. Methods: we surveyed members of the Endourological Society regarding their practice settings and their opinions on positioning for robot-assisted laparoscopic prostatectomy. Summary statistics were reviewed and data were analyzed using chi-square tests and t-tests. Results: our survey had 92 eligible respondents. The majority were fellowship-trained, with 51% trained in robotics and 57% practicing in the U.S. with a mean of 13 years of practice. Most were working in an academic setting (69%) and performing at least 25 robotic prostatectomies yearly. 28 respondents used the Intuitive Surgical Inc. da Vinci® Xi™ exclusively (30%), and nearly two-thirds used it sometimes. Although 54% of respondents considered using supine positioning, less than half of these surgeons used it regularly, while 75% overall preferred lithotomy. A majority attributed this choice to surgical team familiarity with lithotomy positioning. Surgeons in the U.S. and those using the da Vinci® Xi™ were more likely to consider supine positioning. Conclusions: lithotomy position is the standard for RALP procedures; nonetheless, it poses significant risks that might be avoided with supine positioning. Our survey suggests that, although supine positioning has been considered, it has not gained momentum in practice. Addressing factors of inertia in training practices and one’s surgical team might allow for novel and safer approaches.

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