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A Journal on Surgery

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Minerva Chirurgica 2015 October;70(5):373-80

language: English

Minimally invasive colorectal surgery: status and technical specifications

Keller D. S., Ibarra S., Haas E. M.

Minimally Invasive Surgery, The University of Texas, Medical School at Houston, Houston Methodist Hospital, Houston, TX, USA


Laparoscopy was the most significant technologic advance in colorectal surgery in the last quarter century. The safety, feasibility and oncologic equivalence have been proven, and undisputed clinical benefits have also been demonstrated over open approaches. Despite proven benefits, laparoscopic has not dominated the market, especially for colon and rectal cancer cases. Adaptations in laparoscopic technique were developed to increase use of minimally invasive surgery. Concurrently, there has been a paradigm shift toward less invasive technologies to further optimize patient outcomes. From these needs, hand assisted laparoscopic surgery (HALS), single incision laparoscopic surgery (SILS), and robotic assisted laparoscopic surgery (RALS) were applied to colorectal surgery. Each platform has unique costs and benefits, and similar outcomes when likened to each other in comparative studies. However, conventional laparoscopy, HALS, SILS, and RALS actually serve a complementary role as tools to increase the use of minimally invasive colorectal surgery. The goal of this paper is to review the history, current status, technical specifications, and evolution of the major minimally invasive platforms for colorectal surgery.

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