Professor Kim Yong-hee of the Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular surgery performed the 200th robotic surgery for esophageal cancer on January 2.
Esophageal cancer surgery is regarded as one of the most sophisticated due to its long operation time of more than six hours and the high risk for complications. Robot-assisted surgery for esophageal cancer will
▲enhance surgical precision by offering a magnified view of nerves and paratracheal lymph nodes
▲ease postoperative pain by minimizing the incision, and
▲reduce the risk of complications, such as pneumonia
Since 2008, when the first robotic surgery for esophageal cancer was performed at AMC, a minimally invasive surgical procedure that uses only robots and a laparoscope has been done on more than 95% of robotic surgery patients. This has been achieved through close cooperation between the Department of Thoracic & Cardiovascular Surgery and the Department of Stomach Surgery. Unlike the existing approach, in which anastomosis is confined to the neck, this procedure allows intrapleural esophageal-stomach anastomosis using a robot, depending on the lesions the patient has.
As indications get wider, robotic surgery is being performed on esophageal cancer patients at various stages. In recent years, more than 40 robotic surgeries for esophageal cancer have been performed at AMC, which accounts for 30% of all esophageal cancer surgeries at AMC.
Professor Kim Yong-hee said, “Robotic surgery for esophageal cancer is performed every week since 2016, compared to bi-weekly until 2015, as indications are expanding. As various forms of robots are developed and used, robotic surgery for esophageal cancer will increase. I hope it will help improve the outcomes of treatment and the postoperative quality of life of esophageal cancer patients.”