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Total intracorporeal robot-assisted laparoscopic ileal conduit (Bricker) urinary diversion: technique and outcomes
Department of Urology, SUNY-Stony Brook University Health Sciences Center, School of Medicine, Stony Brook, New York, USA
Feb  2011 (Vol.  18, Issue  1, Pages( 5548 - 5556)
PMID: 21333051


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    Several recent preliminary reports have demonstrated that Robot-Assisted Cystectomy with total intracorporeal Ileal Conduit (RACIC) is a feasible option over the open technique. We report our stepwise surgical procedure of robotic total intracorporeal ileal conduit urinary diversion, technical consideration, development, refinements and initial experience. Only the ileal conduit urinary diversion is described with no emphasis on the cystectomy's steps. METHODS: Between February 2008 and September 2009, nine patients underwent RACIC for muscle invasive transitional cell carcinoma (TCC). The entire procedure, including radical cystoprostatectomy, extended pelvic node dissection (ePLND), ileal conduit urinary diversion (Bricker) including isolation of the ileal loop (20 cm ileal segment) 15 cm away from the ileocecal junction, restoration of bowel continuity with stapled side-to-side ileo-ileal anastomosis, retroperitoneal transfer of the left ureter to the right side, and bilateral stented (8 F feeding tube) ileo-ureteral anastomoses in a Wallace faction were all performed exclusively intracorporeally using the da Vinci Si surgical robot and finally the conduit stoma was fashioned.


    The RACIC was technically successful in all nine patients (three females and six males. Mean age 74.1; 57 to 87) without open conversion. The mean operative time including extended pelvic lymphadenectomy and urinary diversion was 346.2 minutes (210 to 480). Mean operative time of diversion is 72 minutes (52-113) mean estimated blood loss 258 mL (200 to 500) and the median hospital stay were 14 days (10 to 27). In all three female patients, the specimen was extracted through the vagina. There were no intraoperative complications and only one major postoperative complication: one postoperative iatrogenous necrosis of the ileal conduit caused by uncareful retraction of the organ bag and thereby probably injuring the conduit pedicle, as the ileal conduit was well vascularised at the end of the operation, requiring an open revision (in male patient extracted through the suprapubic incision). A clear liquid diet was started on the third postoperative day. All patients returned to normal activity within 2 weeks (from date of surgery). Postoperative renal function was normal with mean postoperative creatine 0.99 mg/dL) and excretory urography revealed unobstructed upper tracts in all cases.


    Robot-assisted radical cystoprostatectomy with intracorporeal ileal conduit urinary diversion for the treatment of high risk or invasive bladder cancer with urinary diversion is technically feasible. The robotic system aids in performing a meticulous dissection and all operative steps of the open procedure are replicated precisely while adhering to the sound oncologic principles of traditional radical cystectomy. Robotics brings an unprecedented control of surgical instruments, shorten the learning curve, and allow open surgeons to apply more easily their technical skill in a minimal invasive fashion. Robotic cystectomy with total intracorporeal ileal conduit urinary diversion offers operative and perioperative benefits and functional outcome. In our hands results comparable to open experience with further reduced perioperative morbidity, early recovery, resumption of normal activities, excellent cosmesis and increased quality of life (QOL). In addition, minimal blood loss, fluid shifts, and electrolyte loss considerably reduce systemic and cardiovascular stress in these older groups of patients.