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Robotic Swenson Pull-Through for Hirschsprung's Disease in Infants

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It has been demonstrated that infants with Hirschsprung's disease can be treated with a one-stage laparoscopic resection and coloanal pull-through. However, the feasibility and benefits of performing this operation using robotic technology have not yet been evaluated. We reviewed our experience with 12 infants diagnosed with Hirschsprung's disease and treated with laparoscopic-robotic assisted colonic resection with proctectomy and pull-through using the da Vinci robotic system. Patients were treated at a mean age/weight of 16 weeks/5.5 kg. The average operative time for the robotic procedure was 230 minutes, and average length of stay was 3 days. At discharge, all patients were having regular bowel movements and tolerating a completely oral diet. All patients received early postoperative anorectal dilation and six patients required dilations for an average of 12 weeks after surgery for management of minor rectal strictures. Only two patients developed postoperative enterocolitis with a mean follow-up of 36 months. A robotic approach for performing a Swenson-type resection and pull-through procedure can be performed safely and successfully in young infants. Robotic technology provided superior dexterity and visualization, essential in performing a more complete rectal dissection, thus allowing for a complete proctectomy and eliminating the risk of leaving a segment of aganglionic rectum behind.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Surgery, Division of Pediatric Surgery, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

Publication date: July 1, 2011

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  • The Southeastern Surgical Congress owns and publishes The American Surgeon monthly. It is the official journal of the Congress and the Southern California Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, which all members receive each month. The journal brings up to date clinical advances in surgical knowledge in a popular reference format. In addition to publishing papers presented at the annual meetings of the associated organizations, the journal publishes selected unsolicited manuscripts. If you have a manuscript you'd like to see published in The American Surgeon select "Information for Authors" from the Related Information options below. A Copyright Release Form must accompany all manuscripts submitted.
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