In recent years, robotic partial nephrectomy has emerged as a technique for treatment of small renal masses alongside laparoscopic and open partial nephrectomy. Since this technique is still in a phase of adoption, many technical improvements, alterations and early experiences are published. We aim to review the recent literature, focus on recent advances in techniques and give an overview of published series.
Recent series confirm the feasibility of robotic partial nephrectomy and demonstrate perioperative data and short-term oncological outcomes that are at least comparable to laparoscopic series. The development of better renorrhaphy techniques and optimal use of the robotic features to gain console surgeon independence seem to be the main focus. Also alternative hilar control, early unclamping and off-clamp techniques are being developed to lower the ischaemic effect on the kidney. The learning curve seems to be less steep than laparoscopic techniques.
Robotic partial nephrectomy proves to be a well tolerated and efficacious minimally invasive option in the treatment of renal lesions. Main areas of interest are decreasing warm ischaemia time and modified renal closure techniques.