Robotic Surgery v/s Traditional Surgery: Which is Better?
Robotic Surgery |
Posted on 11/06/2023 by RBH
Robotic surgery has evolved as a revolutionary progression in the medical field, presenting several benefits when compared to traditional surgery. The discussion over which is a better method continues as both of them have their own pros and cons. Traditional surgery has been standard in the clinical field. However, with the robotic surgery advancement, the question appears whether the latter is a better substitute. While robotic surgery offers various advantages, it also has some restrictions, and it is vital to comprehend the differences between these two surgical types before making an informed decision.
If your doctor has recommended surgery and you don’t know which one to choose, you can book your appointment with Rukmani Birla Hospital in Jaipur. It is one of the best multispeciality healthcare services in the city as it is equipped with highly qualified and skilled healthcare professionals. They will ensure offering you complete information and counsel in this regard.
In this blog, we aim to offer an assessment of robotic surgery v/s traditional surgery considering several aspects so that you can make a wise decision. Kindly note that the information is research-based and we don’t in any way encourage missing out on doctor’s consultations.
Robotic Surgery- Advantages & Disadvantages
Robotic surgery is a minimally invasive surgical procedure that involves using robots to perform surgeries. The robotic system is controlled by highly qualified and skilled surgeons operating from a console. Various advantages and disadvantages are linked to robotic surgery:
Advantages of Robotic Surgery
- Precision and accuracy- It offers exceptional precision and accuracy than conventional surgery methods lowering the complications risk with enhanced results.
- Minimally invasive- Robotic surgery is less invasive and requires smaller incisions only. It benefits in less pain, quick recovery time, and less scarring.
- Minimal blood loss- The use of robotic systems in surgical procedures helps in reducing the risk of blood loss. It also means no need for blood transfusions.
- Enhanced visualization- Surgeons can view the surgical area with high-definition cameras resulting in precise and efficient surgeries.
- Improved motion range- Robotic arms offer an improved range of motion as the surgeon can easily access hard-to-reach areas.
Disadvantages of robotic surgery
- Technical challenges- Robotic surgery has certain technical challenges during surgery like any other technology like robotic arms malfunction, port issues, power cuts, etc. causing the need for restarting the robot. As a result, it causes breaks or problems.
- Standardization lack- Robotic surgery requires standardization with several systems and methods used by various surgeons and healthcare services.
- Cost- Robotic surgery is more costly than conventional surgery because of the equipment and training approach.
- Restricted tactile feedback- Surgeons at times might feel that they aren’t receiving feedback of the same level from robots as traditional surgery. It might lead to complexities or fallacies.
- Learning curve- Without special training and experience, it is hard to perform surgical procedures with robotic surgery.
Traditional surgery- Advantages & Disadvantages
Traditional surgery or open surgery is a surgical method performed to treat several conditions. This surgical method involves large incisions while accessing and treating the targeted area. In recent areas, minimally invasive surgery has become common, but conventional surgery still has more benefits to offer than robotic systems. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of traditional surgery.
Advantages of Traditional Surgery
- Visibility and accuracy- Conventional surgery consents the surgeon to have a straight and unrestricted surgical area view with complete precision. It is mainly essential for difficult and dainty procedures.
- Tactile feedback- It is easier for surgeons to feel structures and tissues that assist them in evaluating the texture of the tissue, its temperature, and constancy, and offers worthwhile feedback.
- Flexibility- Conventional surgery can be used for a huge range of surgical procedures. Surgeons can perform simple to difficult surgeries easily.
- Speed- Traditional surgery sometimes can be faster than robotic surgeries, which can be advantageous in emergency cases or when time is the core.
- Accessibility- Traditional surgery is helpful to treat tumors or lesions that are hard to treat with minimally invasive surgery. It is more accessible than minimally invasive surgeries.
- Restorative procedures- In situations where the aim is reconstruction, repair, or tissue transplant or organs, traditional surgery provides immediate access and extensive efficiency.
- Training and experience- Most surgeons have wide experience in traditional surgery as it has been the norm for decades. This experience can help improve outcomes for some procedures.
- Affordability- Traditional surgery is more accessible and affordable when compared to minimally invasive surgical procedures. However, that depends on the type of procedure.
Disadvantages of Traditional Surgery
- Large incisions- In traditional surgery, usually large incisions are made causing scarring and enhanced risk of infection.
- Long recovery time- People who undergo conventional surgery usually experience longer recovery times than minimally invasive surgery. It leads to long hospital stays and postponing normal routines.
- Pain and discomfort- Due to large incisions and tissue interruption in conventional surgery, it can cause pain and discomfort. Patients might need medications to manage pain.
- Blood loss- Traditional surgery can cause great blood loss compared to robotic surgery. It might raise the requirement for blood transfusions and complexities sometimes linked to extra bleeding.
- Scarring- Due to large incisions, some patients might experience cosmetic concerns because of noticeable and evident scars.
- Longer hospital stays- Conventional surgery might require patient monitoring which means longer hospital stays.
- Complications risk- Traditional surgery involves a high risk of complications like hernias at the incision area, wound infections, and abnormal tissue connections.
- Longer anesthesia exposure- Patients are often exposed to longer anesthesia in traditional surgery due to longer surgical times. It increases the risk of complications linked to anesthesia.
Comparison of Traditional Surgery v/s Robotic Surgery
When it comes to choosing between traditional surgery and robotic surgery, both have their advantages and disadvantages. Hence, it is important to consider the following factors that can help you decide:
- Surgery type- Traditional methods are suitable for certain surgeries, while robotic assistance might be required for other surgeries. For instance, robotic systems can offer benefits for gynecological surgery, prostate, and other cardiac surgery types, whereas traditional can be used for more intricate surgeries.
- Medical condition- It plays an important role when it comes to identifying the better approach. It is vital to consider the severity and problem area. Certain issues can be addressed better with traditional surgery while others can have improved outcomes with robotic surgery.
- Surgeon’s expertise- The Surgeon’s experience and training matter a lot. Robotic surgery needs more training and not all surgeons are efficient when it comes to using robotic surgery. Hence, it is vital to make sure that the surgeon has the required experience and know-how for the chosen method.
- Recovery time- In robotic surgery, less blood loss, smaller incisions, and short hospital stays lead to faster recovery for the patients, whereas in traditional surgery, this is not the case. So, if quick recovery is your priority, robotic surgery might be a better option for you.
- Pain and scarring- In traditional surgery, pain is more and scarring is also quite visible whereas in robotic surgery, there is less pain and minimal scarring.
- Cost- If we compare costs for both surgeries, then robotic surgery is more expensive than traditional. However, it is important to consult a healthcare profession as it depends on the type of surgery.
- Personal choices- It is important to consider your level of comfort with the technology and your comprehension of the probable risks and benefits linked to each surgery type.
- Surgical results- Make sure to get in touch with your doctor and determine the anticipated surgical outcomes for both traditional and robotic surgery. Certain procedures might have the same results irrespective of the approach, while some might have certain differences in terms of results.
- Safety and complications- Before making a decision, put your thoughts into identifying the risks and probable complications associated with both surgical procedures. Your surgeon will be the right person as he/she can provide you with the required information about the safety details for both.
- Second opinion- If you are unsure about which surgical procedure to choose, seek a second opinion from a highly qualified and skilled surgeon. They can give you better insights and references.
It is vital to have a comprehensive discussion with your surgeon to assess the benefits and risks of both methods to make an informed decision. The surgeon will examine your clinical history, the procedure complexity, and your choices when suggesting the better-suited surgical option. Always know that the main aim is to ensure the best results with low risks for your condition. Robotic and traditional surgery both have their own benefits and restrictions. Choosing between these two entirely relies on the factors discussed above. Eventually, the decision of which surgery is best depends on the patient's requirements. In certain cases, a combination of both surgical methods is an adequate solution to achieve the best outcomes.
Traditional and robotic surgery both have their advantages and disadvantages. If we talk about the traditional method, then it offers an abundance of historical experiences and to date is the preferred option for many surgeries. On the other hand, robotic surgery is a great advancement in the medical field but is quite expensive and needs training. Both approaches have their own roles to play in modern healthcare. So, it is always best to consult the surgeon and understand personal preferences before choosing the surgical approach.
What are the advantages of robotic surgery over traditional surgery?
The advantages of robotic surgery over traditional surgery are reduced blood loss, precision, quick recovery times, short hospital stays, minimal pain, and 3D visualization.
Are there any risks or disadvantages of robotic surgery compared to traditional surgery?
Yes, some of the disadvantages linked to robotic surgery are the learning curve, cost, technical challenges, lack of standardization, and restricted tactile feedback.
Is robotic surgery more expensive than traditional surgery?
Yes, robotic surgery is more expensive than traditional surgery because of technical advancements and equipment.
How is the recovery time for robotic surgery compared to traditional surgery?
Recovery time for robotic surgery is less than compared to traditional surgery. Patients don’t have to stay in the hospital for long as it involves smaller incisions which means less blood loss, less pain, and minimal scarring.