Robotic Surgery in Thailand: Current Status and Future Development

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Anusak Yiengpruksawan
Thawatchai Akaraviputh
Asada Methasate
Vitoon Chinswangwatanakul


Robotic surgery, currently monopolized by the intuitive “daVinci Surgical System” (dVSS), has now established
its strong foothold in the USA and a few other countries in Europe and Asia. However, because of its high cost
and lack of evidence to support its superiority over the traditional laparoscopic technique, its utility especially in
less affluent countries remains controversial. In this article, we studied the adoption and development of robotic
programs in Thailand, a middle income country, that had its head started relatively early with the acquisition of
the first generation daVinci system by the private international hospital. The systems have since been installed
in 5 other institutions, 4 of which are academic centers. We analyzed and discussed the causes of success of the
urological program and failure of the others. In the end, we concluded that instead of resisting the trend, it should
be selectively and rationally embraced. We then suggested steps to help with the program development that are
best suited to Thailand’s financial and health care conditions.


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Yiengpruksawan, A., Akaraviputh, T., Methasate, A., & Chinswangwatanakul, V. (2018). Robotic Surgery in Thailand: Current Status and Future Development. Siriraj Medical Journal, 70(5), 466–470. Retrieved from
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