Single-port robotic surgery: challenges and opportunities
Single-port robotic surgery is a modern and innovative, minimally invasive surgical technique that utilises a single incision to perform complex surgical procedures. Compared to traditional laparoscopy and multi-port robotic surgery, single-port robotic surgery offers several key benefits for patients, from improved cosmetic outcomes to reduced risk of infection as a result of reduced tissue trauma. Due to these benefits, companies such as Intuitive Surgical have released their single port robotic system and companies such as Medtronic and Vicarious Surgical are investing heavily to develop their single-port robotic systems and get them to market. Despite all of this innovation, the technology is not without
Having worked on the development of a multi-port robotic system myself, I’ve witnessed first-hand how these surgical robots can be applied to a variety of procedures. What is clear is that the adoption of disruptive technology in the surgical space is usually a marathon, not a sprint. It takes time for surgeons to adapt to new technologies, understand the limitations and develop new techniques. It is usually only when a clear clinical benefit can be seen that we reach the tipping point for adoption.
For single-port robotic surgery to gain more widespread adoption, a clear understanding of its challenges and opportunities for innovation is required.