Background. The aim of this prospective study was to determine the technical feasibility, safety, and efficacy of transoral robotic surgery (TORS) for a variety of malignant head and neck lesions. Methods. From April 2007 to November 2007, 20 patients were enrolled in an institutional review board-approved prospective trial using the daVinci surgical robot. Inclusion criteria for the study consisted of adults with early head and neck cancer involving the oral cavity, oropharynx, hypopharynx, and larynx. Results. Twenty patients were included in this study. In 2 cases, access to the tumor was inadequate and the procedure was terminated. In all 18 cases, negative resection margins were achieved. Intraoral reconstruction was performed in 8 patients. Fifteen of 18 patients underwent concomitant unilateral (n = 10) or bilateral (n = 5) selective neck dissections. None of the patients required tracheotomy and there were no intraoperative or postoperative complications. The average setup time was 54.6 minutes (range, 140-20 minutes), with a precipitous decrease in the setup time as the study progressed. Conclusion. TORS is a safe, feasible, and minimally invasive alternative to classic open surgery or endoscopic transoral laser surgery in patients with early cancer of the head and neck. With increasing experience, surgical setup as well as operative time will continue to decrease.
- Minimally invasive