Requesting Patient Characteristics for Readmissions Noted in “Single-site Robotic Cholecystectomy in a Broadly Inclusive Patient Population: A Prospective Study”

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To the Editor:
We have read, with pleasure, the article by Dr Vidovszky et al1 on single-site robotic cholecystectomies in the July 2014 edition of Annals of Surgery and are writing in response to it. We believe that the rate of readmission in 30 days for completed single-site robotic cholecystectomies in this study is higher than usual (3.4%). In the article “A 5-Year Analysis of Readmissions Following Elective Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy—Cohort Study” published in 2011 in the International Journal of Surgery, the rate of readmission after classic laparoscopic cholecystectomy, which is currently the clinical standard of care, up to even 6 weeks after the procedure was only 2.8%. The authors did not comment on the 3.4% readmission rate other than stating that readmission “was required for only a minority of patients.” We are asking for the authors of this article to provide commentary on the patients who were readmitted. What were the original clinical diagnoses for the readmitted patients? Were they merely 1 of the 80 patients with a diagnosis of symptomatic cholelithiasis, or were they patients who originally had more severe disease processes? It would seem intuitive to think that postoperative pain at the single-site port due to the torquing of the robotic arm could have been a major factor in the readmissions; please comment.
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