Robotically Assisted Totally Endoscopic Atrial Septal Defect Repair: Insights From Operative Times, Learning Curves, and Clinical Outcome

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Remote access perfusion and robotics have enabled totally endoscopic closure of atrial septal defect and patent foramen ovale. The aim of this study was to address learning curve issues of totally endoscopic atrial septal defect repair on the basis of a single-center experience and to investigate whether long cardiopulmonary bypass and aortic occlusion times influence intraoperative and postoperative outcomes.


Seventeen patients (median age, 35 years; range, 16 to 55 years) underwent totally endoscopic atrial septal defect repair using remote access perfusion and robotic technology (da Vinci telemanipulation system). Learning curves were assessed by means of regression analysis with logarithmic curve fit. The effect of operative variables on clinical outcome was analyzed by linear regression using the Spearman's rho coefficient.


No operative mortality or serious surgical complications were observed. No residual shunt was detected at intraoperative or postoperative echocardiography. Significant learning curves were noted for total operative time:y(min) = 406 − 49 ln(x) (r2= 0.725;p= 0.002); cardiopulmonary bypass time:y(min) = 225 − 42 ln(x) (r2= 0.699;p= 0.003); and aortic occlusion time:y(min) = 117 − 25 ln(x) (r2= 0.517;p= 0.04),x= number of procedures. Median ventilation time, intensive care unit stay, and hospital length of stay were 7 hours (range, 2 to 19 hours), 26 hours (range, 15 to 120 hours), and 8 days (range, 5 to 14 days), respectively. No correlation was detected between cardiopulmonary bypass time and intubation time (r2= 0.283;p= 0.326), intensive care unit stay (r2= −0.138;p= 0.639), or total length of stay (r2= 0.013;p= 0.962).


Totally endoscopic atrial septal defect repair can be performed safely, and learning curves for operative times are steep. Longer cardiopulmonary bypass times had no negative impact on intraoperative and postoperative outcome.

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