A debate about the merits of robotic versus laparoscopic hysterectomy will feature debaters who have extensive experience performing both surgical methods.
The Samuel A. Cosgrove Memorial Lecture “Debate: Robotic vs. Laparoscopic Hysterectomy” will take place from 3:40 – 4:30 pm today in Hall D. Arnold P. Advincula, MD, Levine Family professor, vice chair of women’s health, and chief of gynecology at Sloane Hospital for Women at New York Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center, will speak in support of robotic surgery, while Matthew Siedhoff, MD, MSCR, an associate professor and director of the Center for Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, will support the more conventional laparoscopic hysterectomy.
Dr. Advincula has performed conventional and robot-assisted laparoscopic procedures around the world during his 17 years of clinical practice. His experience has shown him that robotics is a natural evolution in surgery, and he’s always “baffled” about why he’s asked to debate such a long-standing and well-established procedure.
“It isn’t going anywhere,” he said. “Critics need to focus on the bigger picture items—how do we continue to maximize value based health care without compromising innovative technologies that really take minimally invasive surgery to the next level?”
Dr. Siedhoff feels uniquely qualified to debate Dr. Advincula on this subject. He has performed thousands of minimally invasive surgeries, the majority of which were done with conventional laparoscopy. He performed around 300 robotic procedures earlier in the decade—having performed the last in 2016, before abandoning the approach altogether.
He said that while cost has been the most common argument against robotic surgery, some of the technical and teaching demands can also lead to more patient risk.
The debate will include a short history of how robotic surgery became part of gynecology. Drs. Advincula and Siedhoff will then review the evidence about the benefits, risks, and cost of robotic surgery compared to laparoscopic procedures.
The session also includes a look at clinical scenarios where robotic assistance might be a positive or negative factor in minimally invasive surgery.
“We really need to focus on increasing access to minimally invasive surgery, regardless of technique,” Dr. Siedhoff said. “And volume is key to success there, not the technology.”