“Five on a dice” port placement for robot-assisted thoracoscopic right upper lobectomy using robotic stapler

Min P. Kim, Edward Y. Chan


Early versions of the da Vinci robot system (S and Si) have been used to perform pulmonary lung resection with severe limitations. The lack of a vascular robot stapler required the presence of a trained bedside assistant whose role was to place, manipulate and fire the stapler around major vascular structures. Thus, the techniques developed for the Si robot required a skilled bedside assistant to perform stapling of the hilar structure and manipulation of the lung. With the advent of the da Vinci Xi system with a vascular robot stapler, we postulated that we could develop a new port placement and technique to provide total control for the surgeon during the pulmonary lung resection. We found that the “five on a dice” port placement and technique allows for minimal assistance during the lobectomy with full control by the surgeon. This technique uses the full capability of the Xi robot to make the robot-assisted lobectomy a safe and ergonomic operation.