The field of robotic liver resection (RLR) has developed in the past decades. This technique seems to improve the access to the posterosuperior (PS) segments. Evidence of a possible advantage over transthoracic laparoscopy (TTL) is not yet available. We aimed to compare RLR to TTL for tumors located in the PS segments of the liver in terms of feasibility, difficulty scoring, and outcome.
This retrospective study compared patients undergoing robotic liver resections and transthoracic laparoscopic resections of the PS segments between January 2016 and December 2022 in a high-volume HPB center. Patients’ characteristics, perioperative outcomes, and postoperative complications were evaluated.
In total, 30 RLR and 16 TTL were included. Only wedge resections were performed in the TTL group, while 43% of the patients in the RLR group had an anatomical resection (p < 0.001). The difficulty score according to the IWATE difficulty scoring system was significantly higher in the RLR group (p < 0.001). Total operative time was similar between the two groups. Complication rates, either overall or major, were comparable between the two techniques and hospital stay was significantly shorter in the RLR group. Patients in the TTL group were found to have more pulmonary complications (p = 0.01).
RLR may provide some advantages over TTL for the resection of tumors located in the PS segments.