Attitudes and Beliefs Regarding the Utility of Robotically Assisted Gynecologic Surgery Among Practicing Gynecologists

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Abstract

While use of robotic-assisted surgery has increased rapidly, little is known about the attitudes and beliefs of practicing gynecologists regarding the utility of the technology. We surveyed a large sample of gynecologists to examine their attitudes and beliefs about the benefits, utility, and factors driving use of robotic-assisted gynecologic surgery. A 51-item survey was mailed to 600 fellows or junior fellows of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. The survey included questions on use of robotic surgery, decision-making, and beliefs regarding the technology. Responses were stratified based on whether the respondent used robotic surgery or not. A total of 310 responses were received including 27.8% who used robotic surgery in their practices. Hysterectomy was the most commonly performed procedure. Opinions about the use and effectiveness of robotic procedures varied based on whether an individual was a robot user. Eighty-two percentage of robot users and 21% of nonrobot users believed robotic surgery provided benefits over laparoscopic (p < .0001). Among both groups, the ability to increase access to minimally invasive surgery and marketing were believed to be the greatest drivers of use of robotic surgery. Attitudes and beliefs about the effectiveness of robotic gynecologic surgery are highly variable among clinicians.

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