Is the Use of a Robotic Camera Holder Economically Viable? A Cost Comparison of Surgical Assistant Versus the Use of a Robotic Camera Holder in Laparoscopic Liver Resections

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The laparoscopic approach has gained acceptance in the field of hepatopancreaticobiliary surgery. It offers several advantages including reduced blood loss, reduced postoperative pain, and shorter length of stay. However, long operating times can be associated with surgeon and assistant fatigue and image tremor. Robotic camera holders have been designed to overcome these drawbacks but may come with significant costs. The aim of this study was to economically evaluate their use compared with standard assistants using a single surgeon consecutive series of laparoscopic liver resections from January 2014 to May 2015. Only use of nurse assistants with no advanced training and postgraduate year 2 doctors were cheaper than utilization of the device. We suggest the use of a robotic camera holder is cost-beneficial and may have wider service and educational benefits.

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