Problems with robotic surgery
I thought I’d pose a topic to the group concerning issues with robotic surgery.
I have had two robotic surgeries now – mesh implantation and mesh explantation.
The benefits are clear – mobility is pretty much immediate after surgery, and the incisions and scars are smaller (even if there are more of them).
But in my experience, I have come to believe that there are some long term impacts of using the robot and inflating the abdomen and peeling all of that fascia away in order to perform surgery. I am probably more sensitive than most, but I feel like my abdomen has never been quite the same since these surgeries, particularly on my right side where I had my hernia, and I think the potential damage caused by this process is underappreciated.
I can’t be sure it was caused by the robot, but I have a puffiness on my right side that I never noticed before the surgery, and it exists right around where the right trocar was placed. There apparently is no incisional hernia here or any other issues detected by any sort of imaging or exam, and nothing special was noted about that spot at the time of the second surgery when the mesh was removed. But my right side has never quite felt the same since the first surgery, and the mild discomfort extends all the way up to just under my ribcage.
I would also add that while I was mobile immediately after surgery, I felt awful for several days due to extremely uncomfortable feelings of bloating and swelling and just general malaise, and I don’t just mean the discomfort in my shoulders from the gas – it was all over my abdomen. This eventually went away, but 2 months now after the second surgery, my stomach still feels bigger and firmer.
I also developed nerve pain in the fatty part of my abdomen, not associated with the groin. This has thankfully faded, but I still have sensations in the umbilical area of tightness and pulling that I am sure are related to the surgery and the healing process and scar tissue. I am hoping this continues to ease and feel more natural over time, but it does make me wonder in general about robotic surgery.
Anyway, it seems robotic surgery and lap surgery are advertised as being very ‘minimally invasive’ and yet the area impacted by this surgery is at times much larger than that of open surgery, and I wonder if the potential issues that this can cause is really being fully appreciated by patients and surgeons.
Curious what other think. I have spoken with a number of friends who have had both lap and open hernia repairs, and they all seemed to think that ultimately the open surgeries were easier on balance even if the lap surgeries got them mobile sooner.
- This discussion was modified 2 years, 10 months ago by ajm222.
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