Minimally invasive surgical approaches for pancreatic resection have been established as feasible and safe. Whereas widespread application of laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy is in progress, the utilization of laparoscopic pancreaticoduodenectomy is still localized to a few centers because of the added complexity and advanced laparoscopic skills required. Comparative studies have demonstrated the typical advantages of minimally invasive approaches for pancreatic resection, namely, less blood loss and shorter hospital stay. Robotic assistance for laparoscopic approaches is gaining interest, but the true value added is still undefined. Significant discussion revolves around the appropriateness of minimally invasive approaches in pancreatic cancer. Although limited data and only short-term follow-up engender ongoing skepticism, the technical feasibility, existing reports in pancreatic cancer, and the lack of negative outcomes in other gastrointestinal cancers spark ongoing clinical evaluation. Minimally invasive surgical approaches have significant potential to improve the outcomes of pancreatic resection especially in pancreatic cancer patients in whom an optimal recovery is important for adjuvant treatment options. Larger experiences are forthcoming, and controlled trials are eagerly awaited; however, the feasibility of such is questionable because of the low incidence of resectable pancreatic cancer and the small number of centers performing minimally invasive pancreatectomy for malignancy.
- Pancreatic cancer
- laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy
- robotic resection
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research