Quality of life after robotic versus conventional minimally invasive cancer surgery: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Document Type



Medical College Pakistan


Optimizing postoperative quality of life (QoL) is an essential aspect of surgical oncology. Minimally invasive surgery (MIS) decreases surgical morbidity and improves QoL outcomes. This meta-analysis aimed to compare post-operative QoL after oncologic resections using different MIS modalities. The PubMed, Embase, Scopus, and CENTRAL databases were searched for articles that compared post-operative QoL in patients undergoing video-assisted thoracoscopic (VATS) or laparoscopic surgery (LS) versus robotic surgery (RS) for malignancy. Quality assessment was performed using the ROBINS-I and Cochrane Risk of Bias 2 (RoB-2) tools. Meta-analysis was performed using an inverse-variance random effects model. 27 studies met the inclusion criteria, including 5 randomized controlled trials (RCTs). 15 studies had a low risk of bias, while 11 had a moderate risk of bias and 1 had serious risk of bias. 8330 patients (RS: 5090, LS/VATS: 3240) from across 25 studies were included in the meta-analysis. Global QoL was significantly better after robotic surgery in the pooled analysis overall (SMD: - 0.28 [95% CI: - 0.49, - 0.08]), as well as in the prostatectomy and gastrectomy subgroups. GRADE certainty of evidence was low. Analysis of EPIC-26 subdomains also suggested greater sexual function after robotic versus laparoscopic prostatectomy. Robotic and conventional MIS approaches produce similar postoperative QoL after oncologic surgery for various tumor types, although advantages may emerge in some patient populations. Our results may assist surgeons in counseling patients who are undergoing oncologic surgery.


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Publication (Name of Journal)

Journal of Robotic Surgery