Purpose: The da Vinci Surgical System has been used in only a few cases for treating mediastinal tumors in Japan. Recently, we used the da Vinci Surgical System for various types of anterior and middle mediastinal tumors in clinical practice. We report our early experience using the da Vinci Surgical System. Methods: Seven patients gave written informed consent to undergo robotic surgery for mediastinal tumor dissection using the da Vinci Surgical System. We evaluated the safety and feasibility of this system for the surgical treatment of mediastinal tumors. Results: Two specialists in thoracic surgery who are certified to use the da Vinci S Surgical System and another specialist acted as an assistant performed the tumor dissection. We were able to access difficult-to-reach areas, such as the mediastinum, safely. All the resected tumors were classified as benign tumors histologically. The average da Vinci setting time was 14.0 min, the average working time was 55.7 min, and the average overall operating time was 125.9 min. The learning curve for the da Vinci setup and manipulation time was short. Conclusion: Robotic surgery enables mediastinal tumor dissection in certain cases more safely and easily than conventional video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery and less invasively than open thoracotomy.
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