Current trends in robotic surgery for otolaryngology

J Kenneth Byrd, Umamaheswar Duvvuri
Current Otorhinolaryngology Reports 2013 September 1, 1 (3): 153-157
As minimally invasive surgery has become common in head and neck surgery, the role of robotic surgery has expanded from thyroid surgery and transoral robotic surgery (TORS) of the oropharynx and supraglottic to other areas. Surgeons have advanced the limits of TORS, adapting lasers to the Da Vinci robot for glottic cancer, and combining existing techniques for transoral supraglottic laryngectomy and hypopharyngectomy to perform transoral total laryngectomy. Skull base approaches have been reported with some success in case reports and cadaver models, but the current instrument size and configuration limit the applicability of the current robotic system. Surgeons have reported reconstruction of the head and neck via local and free flaps. Using the previously reported approaches for thyroidectomy via modified facelift incision, neck dissection has also been reported. Future applications of robotic surgery in otolaryngology may be additionally expanded, as several new robotic technologies are under development for endolaryngeal work and neurotology.

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