Robotic Surgery May Be Option in Elderly Women


Major Finding: Intraoperative complication rates for the older and younger groups were similar at around 7%.

Data Source: A study comparing endometrial cancer outcomes after robotic surgery in 27 octogenarians and nonagenarians with 395 younger controls.

Disclosures: Dr. Lowe has served as a consultant for Intuitive Surgical Inc.

SAN FRANCISCO — Robotic surgery for endometrial cancer is a safe option for patients in their 80s and 90s, based on data from a study comparing outcomes from 27 octogenarians and nonagenarians with 395 younger controls.

“Age should not be a contraindication to robotic surgical management of patients with endometrial cancer,” said Dr. M. Patrick Lowe of Northwestern University in Chicago and his colleagues in a poster presentation at the annual meeting of the Society of Gynecologic Oncologists.

The investigators created a multi-institutional HIPAA-compliant database and analyzed all adult women who underwent robotic-assisted surgery with staging for endometrial cancer between April 2003 and January 2009.

They compared perioperative outcomes for patients aged 80-95 years with those of controls younger than 80 years. The median age of the study population was 84 years, and the median body mass index was 28 kg/m

Approximately half of the patients reported a prior abdominal surgery, and a final analysis showed that 75% had stage I or stage II disease.

No statistically significant differences were seen between the older patients and the controls in operative time (192 minutes vs. 167 minutes), blood loss (55 cc in both groups), and node count (16 in both groups).

None of the patients received a blood transfusion, and the average hospital stay was 1 day for both groups.

The overall intraoperative and postoperative complication rates in the older group were 7% and 33%, respectively.

The intraoperative rate was similar to that seen in the younger control group.

The postoperative complication rate was higher in the elderly group, but the difference was not significant.

“Patients 80 years and older who undergo robotic surgery for endometrial cancer can expect surgical outcomes similar to those of the general population,” Dr. Lowe and his associates wrote.

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