Robot-assisted laparoscopic pyeloplasty in the pediatric population: a review of technique, outcomes, complications, and special considerations in infants.
Ureteropelvic junction obstruction is a common condition encountered by the pediatric urologist, and treated with pyeloplasty when indicated. Recent technological advancements and a shift across all surgical fields to embrace minimally invasive surgery have led to increased utilization of minimally invasive pyeloplasty. Conventional laparoscopy is a reasonable choice, but its use is limited by the technical challenges of precise suturing in a confined space and the associated considerable learning curve. Robotic technology has simplified the minimally invasive approach to pyeloplasty, offering enhanced visualization and improved dexterity with a fairly short learning curve. As utilization of robotic pyeloplasty continues to increase, we sought to critically assess the literature on this approach. We begin with a review of the technical aspects of robot-assisted laparoscopic pyeloplasty including tips for surgical proficiency and patient safety. Outcomes and complications from the contemporary literature are reviewed, as well as special considerations in the pediatric population including infant pyeloplasty, cost concerns, training, and postoperative diversion/drainage.
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