Robotic versus port-access mitral repair: A propensity score analysis.



Port-access (PORT) and robotic (ROBO) mitral repair are well established, but differences in patient selection and outcomes are not well documented.


A retrospective analysis was performed on 129 ROBO and 628 PORT mitral repairs at one institution. ROBO patients had 4 cm nonrib spreading incisions with robotic assistance, while PORT patients had 6-8 cm rib spreading incisions with thoracoscopic assistance. Propensity score analysis matched patients for differences in baseline characteristics.


Unmatched ROBO patients were younger (58 ± 11 vs. 61 ± 13, p = .05), had a higher percentage of males (77% vs. 63%, p = .003) and had less NYHA Class 3-4 symptoms (11% vs. 21%, p < .01), less atrial fibrillation (19% vs. 29%, p = .02) and less tricuspid regurgitation (14% vs. 24%, p = .01). Propensity score analysis of matched patients showed that pump time (275 ± 57 vs. 207 ± 55, p < .0001) and clamp time (152 ± 38 vs. 130 ± 34, p < .0001) were longer for ROBO patients. However, length of stay, postoperative morbidity, and 5-year survival (97 ± 1% vs. 96 ± 3%, p = .7) were not different. For matched patients with degenerative valve disease, 5-year incidence of mitral reoperation (3 ± 2% vs. 1 ± 1%), severe mitral regurgitation (MR) (6 ± 4% vs. 1 ± 1%), or ≥2 + MR (12 ± 5% vs. 12 ± 4%), were not significantly different between ROBO versus PORT approaches. Predictors of recurrent moderate MR were connective tissue disease, functional etiology, and non-White race, but not surgical approach.


In this first comparison out to 5 years, robotic versus port-access approach to mitral repair had longer pump and clamp times. Perioperative morbidity, 5-year survival, and 5-year repair durability were otherwise similar.





Published Version (Please cite this version)


Publication Info

Barac, Yaron D, Rahul S Loungani, Richard Sabulsky, Brittany Zwischenberger, Jeffrey Gaca, Keith Carr and Donald D Glower (2021). Robotic versus port-access mitral repair: A propensity score analysis. Journal of cardiac surgery, 36(4). pp. 1219–1225. 10.1111/jocs.15342 Retrieved from

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Brittany Anne Zwischenberger

Assistant Professor of Surgery

Jeffrey Giles Gaca

Associate Professor of Surgery

Donald D. Glower

Professor of Surgery

Current clinical research projects examine the effects of patient characteristics and surgical technique in outcome after minimally invasive cardiac surgery, valve repair and replacement, and coronary artery bypass grafting.
Prior work has examined the role of surgical therapy versus medical therapy in aortic dissection, load-independent means to quantify left and right ventricular function, and management of complex coronary disease.

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