INTRODUCTION: Robotic technologies are being increasingly implemented in healthcare, including urology, and holding promises for improving medicine worldwide. However, these new approaches raise ethical concerns for professionals, patients, researchers and institutions that need to be addressed. The aim of this review was to investigate the existing literature related to bioethical issues associated with robotic surgery in urology, in order to identify current challenges and make preliminary suggestions to ensure an ethical implementation of these technologies.EVIDENCE ACQUISITION: We performed a review of the pertaining literature through a systematic search of two databases (PubMed and Web of Science) in August 2020.EVIDENCE SYNTHESIS: Our search yielded 76 articles for full-text evaluation and 48 articles were included in the narrative review. Several bioethical issues were identified and can be categorized into five main subjects: 1) robotic surgery accessibility (robotic surgery is expensive, and in some health systems may lead to inequality in healthcare access. In more affluent countries the national distribution of several robotic platforms may influence the centralization of robotic surgery, therefore potentially affecting oncological and functional outcomes in low-volume centers); 2) safety (there is a considerable gap between surgical skills and patients' perception of competence, leading to ethical consequences on modern healthcare. Published incidence of adverse events during robotic surgery in large series is between 2% and 15%, which does not significantly differ amongst open or laparoscopic approaches); 3) gender gap (no data about gap differences in accessibility to robotic platforms were retrieved from our search); 4) costs (robotic platforms are expensive but a key reason why hospitals are willing to absorb the high upfront costs is patient demand. It is possible to achieve cost-equivalence between open and robotic prostatectomy if the volume of centers is higher than 10 cases per week); and 5) learning curve (a validated, structured curriculum and accreditation has been created for robotic surgery. This allows acquisition and development of basic and complex robotic skills focusing on patient safety and short learning curve).CONCLUSIONS: Tech-medicine is rapidly moving forward. Robotic approach to urology seems to be accessible in more affluent countries, safe, economically sustainable, and easy to learn with an appropriate learning curve for both sexes. It is mandatory to keep maintaining a critical rational approach with constant control of the available evidence regarding efficacy, efficiency and safety.

Bioethical implications of robotic surgery in urology: a systematic review / Esperto, Francesco; Prata, Francesco; Antonelli, Alessandro; Alloni, Rossana; Campanozzi, Laura; Cataldo, Rita; Civitella, Angelo; Fiori, Cristian; Ghilardi, Giampaolo; Guglielmelli, Eugenio; Minervini, Andrea; Muto, Giovanni; Rocco, Bernardo; Sighinolfi, Chiara; Pang, Karl H; Simone, Giuseppe; Tambone, Vittoroadolfo; Tuzzolo, Piergiorgio; Scarpa, Roberto M; Papalia, Rocco. - In: MINERVA UROLOGY AND NEPHROLOGY. - ISSN 2724-6051. - ELETTRONICO. - 73:(2021), pp. 700-710. [10.23736/S2724-6051.21.04240-3]

Bioethical implications of robotic surgery in urology: a systematic review

Minervini, Andrea;
2021

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Robotic technologies are being increasingly implemented in healthcare, including urology, and holding promises for improving medicine worldwide. However, these new approaches raise ethical concerns for professionals, patients, researchers and institutions that need to be addressed. The aim of this review was to investigate the existing literature related to bioethical issues associated with robotic surgery in urology, in order to identify current challenges and make preliminary suggestions to ensure an ethical implementation of these technologies.EVIDENCE ACQUISITION: We performed a review of the pertaining literature through a systematic search of two databases (PubMed and Web of Science) in August 2020.EVIDENCE SYNTHESIS: Our search yielded 76 articles for full-text evaluation and 48 articles were included in the narrative review. Several bioethical issues were identified and can be categorized into five main subjects: 1) robotic surgery accessibility (robotic surgery is expensive, and in some health systems may lead to inequality in healthcare access. In more affluent countries the national distribution of several robotic platforms may influence the centralization of robotic surgery, therefore potentially affecting oncological and functional outcomes in low-volume centers); 2) safety (there is a considerable gap between surgical skills and patients' perception of competence, leading to ethical consequences on modern healthcare. Published incidence of adverse events during robotic surgery in large series is between 2% and 15%, which does not significantly differ amongst open or laparoscopic approaches); 3) gender gap (no data about gap differences in accessibility to robotic platforms were retrieved from our search); 4) costs (robotic platforms are expensive but a key reason why hospitals are willing to absorb the high upfront costs is patient demand. It is possible to achieve cost-equivalence between open and robotic prostatectomy if the volume of centers is higher than 10 cases per week); and 5) learning curve (a validated, structured curriculum and accreditation has been created for robotic surgery. This allows acquisition and development of basic and complex robotic skills focusing on patient safety and short learning curve).CONCLUSIONS: Tech-medicine is rapidly moving forward. Robotic approach to urology seems to be accessible in more affluent countries, safe, economically sustainable, and easy to learn with an appropriate learning curve for both sexes. It is mandatory to keep maintaining a critical rational approach with constant control of the available evidence regarding efficacy, efficiency and safety.
73
700
710
Esperto, Francesco; Prata, Francesco; Antonelli, Alessandro; Alloni, Rossana; Campanozzi, Laura; Cataldo, Rita; Civitella, Angelo; Fiori, Cristian; Ghilardi, Giampaolo; Guglielmelli, Eugenio; Minervini, Andrea; Muto, Giovanni; Rocco, Bernardo; Sighinolfi, Chiara; Pang, Karl H; Simone, Giuseppe; Tambone, Vittoroadolfo; Tuzzolo, Piergiorgio; Scarpa, Roberto M; Papalia, Rocco
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2158/1287584
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