Early and Late Complications of Robot-Assisted Radical Cystectomy: A Standardized Analysis by Urinary Diversion Type

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Minimally invasive surgical treatment for bladder cancer has gained popularity but standardized data on complications are lacking. Urinary diversion type contributes to complications and to our knowledge diversion types after minimally invasive cystectomy have not yet been compared. We evaluated perioperative complications stratified by urinary diversion type in patients treated with robot-assisted radical cystectomy.

Materials and Methods

We analyzed the records of 209 consecutive patients who underwent robot-assisted radical cystectomy at our institution from 2003 to 2012 with respect to perioperative complications, including severity, time period (early and late) and diversion type. All complications were reviewed by academic urologists. Urinary diversion was also done. As outcome measurements and statistical analysis, univariate and multivariate logistic regression models were used to determine predictors of various complications.


The American Society of Anesthesiologists® (ASA) score was 3 or greater in 80% of patients and continent diversion was performed in 68%. Median followup was 35 months. Within 90 days 77.5% of patients experienced any complication and 32% experienced a major complication. The 90-day mortality rate was 5.3%. Most complications were gastrointestinal, infectious and hematological. On multivariate analysis patients with ileal conduit diversion had a decreased likelihood of complications compared to patients with Indiana pouch and orthotopic bladder substitute diversion despite the selection of a more comorbid population for conduit diversion. Continent diversion was associated with a higher likelihood of urinary tract infection. Our results are comparable to those of previously reported open and minimally invasive cystectomy series.


Open or minimally invasive cystectomy is a complex, morbid procedure. Urinary diversion is a significant contributor to complications, as is patient comorbidity. Although patients with an ileal conduit had more comorbidities, they experienced fewer complications than those with an orthotopic bladder substitute or Indiana pouch diversion.

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