How does the robotic kidney transplant fare against the open technique, in pediatric patients? No one knows. To address this question, this study compares the outcomes of robotic kidney transplants, with those of open transplant in these patients. This study was a retrospective analysis of outcomes (renal function and complications), of all pediatric patients (<18 years of age), who underwent kidney transplant at our institute, after 2014, till their last follow-up. Fisher's exact test was used to compare proportions. Continuous variables were analyzed using Mann-Whitney test. P value of <.05 was considered significant. Of the twenty-five patients included, 21 belonged to open group, and 4 to the robotic group. Patients in the robotic group had significantly higher Re-WIT (P value .002) and had lower analgesia requirement (P value .04). Median follow-up period was 31 months. Both groups were comparable in terms of length of hospital stay, blood transfusion, and renal function post-operatively till their last follow-up. Three patients in the open group had surgical site infection as compared to none in the robotic group. All the patients had functioning grafts till their last follow-up. Robotic transplant is safe and delivers functional results similar to open technique, with lesser pain and better cosmesis. Longer Re-WIT in robotic transplant has no impact on post-operative renal function. Ours is the first known effort to compare robotic technology with the established open technique of transplant in this population. A prospective randomized controlled trial should refine the results of the present study.
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