Safety and feasibility of robotic-assisted Ivor-Lewis esophagectomy

Prof K. Meredith, J. Huston, O. Andacoglu, R. Shridhar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Esophagectomy is associated with substantial morbidity. Robotic surgery allows complex resections to be performed with potential benefits over conventional techniques. We applied this technology to transthoracic esophagectomy to assess safety, feasibility, and reliability of this technology. A retrospective cohort study of all patients undergoing robotic-assisted Ivor-Lewis esophagectomy (RAIL) from 2009 to 2014 was conducted. Clini-copathologic factors and surgical outcomes were recorded and compared. All statistical tests were two-sided and a P-value of <0.05 was considered statistically significant. We identified 147 patients with an average age 66 ± 10 years. Neoadjuvant therapy was administered to 114 (77.6%) patients, and all patients underwent a R0 resection. The mean operating room (OR) time was 415 ± 84.6 minutes with a median estimated blood loss (EBL) of 150 (25-600) mL. Mean intensive care unit (ICU) stay was 2.00 ± 4.5 days, median length of hospitalization (LOH) was 9 (4-38) days, and readmissions within 90 days were low at 8 (5.5%). OR time decreased from 471 minutes to 389 minutes after 20 cases and a further decrease to mean of 346 minutes was observed after 120 cases. Complications occurred in 37 patients (25.2%). There were 4 anastomotic (2.7%) leaks. Thirty and 90-day mortality was 0.68% and 1.4%, respectively. This represents to our knowledge the largest series of robotic esophagectomies. RAIL is a safe surgical technique that provides an alternative to standard minimally invasive and open techniques. In our series, there was no increased risk of LOH, complications, or death and re-admission rates were low despite earlier discharge.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalDiseases of the Esophagus
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Esohageal cancer
  • Esophagectomy
  • Robotic surgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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