Radical Prostatectomy is the operation done to remove the prostate gland and nearby tissue in order to remove prostate cancer. Earlier, the prostatectomies were done using open surgeries, but with the modern advances in the field of surgery, laparoscopic surgeries (also known as minimally invasive surgeries or keyhole surgeries) have become the more preferred and common type. And even though there always are certain risks involved when it comes to surgery, for prostate cancer surgery turns out to be the most effective type of treatment as it removes malignant tumors without producing the painful side effects of radiation therapy or chemotherapy.
During the last decade, robot-assisted prostatectomy procedures have vastly outnumbered the open radical prostatectomy surgeries. In fact,according to a study conducted in 2013, robot-assisted prostatectomies accounted for around 85% of all radical prostatectomies (compared to just 22% in 2003).
Here are some of the main reasons why both surgeons and patients prefer robotic surgery for prostate cancer over the open surgeries.
Benefits of Robot Assisted Radical Prostatectomy
Some of the most notable advantages of robotic prostate cancer surgery include:
- Better Results
Robotic surgical systems like the da Vinci system (also used at Centre for Robotic Surgery), are known to provide better clinical results for prostate cancer surgery as compared to other traditional procedures. This is since such a robotic surgical system offers the surgeon with more degrees of freedom than a human hand and magnified 3-D image of the ongoing procedure, as well as enables the surgeon to make much more precise movements inside the incision than they ever could on their own.
As a result, the efficiency and ease of robotic radical prostatectomy is far higher compared to non-robotic surgeries, and it also reduces damage to the healthy tissue and scar tissue build up. Therefore, the overall clinical results are far superior in a robotic prostatectomy.
- Lesser Complications
While any prostatectomy is not completely safe, the risk of complications is much less in a robot-assisted radical prostatectomy than in other types. The development of infection at the incision site, which is a primary cause of delayed recovery, is more common with open surgeries compared to robotic.
The surgical systems such as the da Vinci surgical system requires only four to five incision which are smaller than two inches; while other traditional open surgeries require bigger, six-to-eight inch incisions instead. As a result, the chances of post-operative infections are much higher in non-robotic surgeries.
- Quicker Recovery
The use of robotic surgical systems has many benefits, chief of those being smaller incisions, less number of sutures, more effective removal of cancerous tissue, less damage to the healthy tissue, minimal bleeding, and reduced contact between the incision walls and the surgical instruments. All these benefits translate directly into a speedier and more hassle-free post prostatectomy recovery of the patient.
- Minimum Scarring
Apart from the obvious aesthetic benefit, minimum scarring caused by robotic surgeries also ensures better healing. This is because in certain rare cases, open surgeries can lead to excess scar-tissue build up, which can affect the normal functioning of the prostate.
And therefore, among the various prostate cancer treatment options, robotic radical prostatectomy has fast become a top choice for both doctors and patients. To learn more about prostate cancer, outcomes of robotic prostatectomy, post-operative care, etc., click here.