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Urology. 2005 Nov;66(5 Suppl):101-4.

Laparoscopic radical prostatectomy: conventional and robotic.

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  • 1Vattikuti Urology Institute, The Josephine Ford Cancer Center, Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, Michigan 48202, USA.


By 2015, prostate cancer will become the most commonly diagnosed cancer in men. Radical prostatectomy reduces disease-specific mortality in patients with localized prostate cancer; however, the invasiveness of surgery and its resultant side effects cause many men to seek other treatments. In 2000, laparoscopic radical prostatectomy emerged as a minimally invasive alternative to open surgery; it has been refined recently by the addition of robotic technology. To examine the outcomes of robotic radical prostatectomy and compare them with those from open and conventional laparoscopic radical prostatectomy, we prospectively collected baseline demographic data on all patients undergoing surgery for prostate cancer over a 4-year period at our center. Urinary function and sexual function were evaluated using standardized criteria as well as a questionnaire preoperatively and at 1, 3, 6, 12, and 18 months after their procedure. Operative and postoperative outcomes were compared using values for open radical prostatectomy as the reference standard. A total of 100 men underwent open radical prostatectomy with conventional laparoscopic radical prostatectomy (n = 50) and robotic radical prostatectomy (n = 500). The odds ratios for operative times, blood loss, postoperative pain, complications, and median times to urinary continence and resumption of sexual activity all were lower for robotic than for open or laparoscopic radical prostatectomy. It appears safe to conclude that conventional laparoscopic radical prostatectomy is a reasonable alternative to open radical prostatectomy in the surgical treatment of patients with clinically localized prostate cancer. The incorporation of robotics may result in even better surgical outcomes than conventional laparoscopy. However, the surgical robot is expensive; few centers have access to the technology and even fewer have expertise in the technique. For robotic radical prostatectomy to become the standard of care for the treatment of localized prostate cancer will require economies of cost, dissemination of surgical expertise, and data from randomized trials.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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