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A Journal on Nephrology and Urology

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Minerva Urologica e Nefrologica 2017 February;69(1):69-75

DOI: 10.23736/S0393-2249.16.02563-7


language: English

Ten-year experience of robot-assisted radical prostatectomy: the road from cherry-picking to standard procedure

Jonas SCHIFFMANN 1, 2, Alexander HAESE 1, Katharina BOEHM 3, Georg SALOMON 1, Thomas STEUBER 1, Hans HEINZER 1, Hartwig HULAND 1, Markus GRAEFEN 1, Pierre I. KARAKIEWICZ 2, 4

1 Martini Clinic, Prostate Cancer Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany; 2 Cancer Prognostics and Health Outcomes Unit, University of Montreal Health Center, Montreal, Canada; 3 Department of Urology, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany; 4 Department of Urology, University of Montreal Health Center, Montreal, Canada


BACKGROUND: Patients treated with robot-assisted radical prostatectomy (RARP) are frequently selected according to more favorable characteristics. Such patient selection might decrease according to increasing experience.
METHODS: We relied on the Martini Clinic Prostate Cancer Center database and focused on patients treated with RARP between 2004 and 2013. Differences in clinical, pathological and surgical characteristics at RARP over time (2004-2010, 2011-2012 and 2013) were assessed.
RESULTS: Overall, 1783 RARP patients were identified. Of those, 407 (22.8%), 764 (42.8%) and 612 (34.3%) were treated between 2004 and 2010, in 2011-2012 and in 2013, respectively. Unfavorable characteristics rate, such as biopsy Gleason Score ≥4+4 (8 vs. 9 vs. 15%, P<0.001), D’Amico high-risk (12 vs. 14 vs. 19%, P=0.001) and pathological Gleason score ≥4+4 (3 vs. 4 vs. 6%, P<0.001) increased over time. Pelvic lymph node dissection (PLND) was more frequently performed over time (62 vs. 83 vs. 84%, P<0.001), especially in D’Amico intermediate or high-risk patients (82 vs. 94 vs. 96%, P<0.001). Lymph node yield increased over time in overall (7 vs. 9 vs. 13, P<0.001), D’Amico intermediate (6 vs. 9 vs. 12, P<0.001) and D’Amico high-risk patients (9 vs. 12 vs. 18, P<0.001). No differences in surgical margin (P=0.7) and nerve sparing rates (P=0.09) were found.
CONCLUSIONS: A clear trend towards more unfavorable tumor characteristics over time was recorded. Additionally, the rates and extent of PLND increased with increasing experience. RAR P does not represent a barrier to PLND at our institution.

KEY WORDS: Learning curve - Robotic surgical procedures - Prostatectomy - Prostatic neoplasms

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Publication History

Issue published online: December 22, 2016
Article first published online: March 9, 2016
Manuscript accepted: March 8, 2016
Manuscript revised: February 18, 2016
Manuscript received: October 11, 2015

Cite this article as

Schiffmann J, Haese A, Boehm K, Salomon G, Steuber T, Heinzer H, et al. Ten-year experience of robot-assisted radical prostatectomy: the road from cherry-picking to standard procedure. Minerva Urol Nefrol 2017;69:69-75. Doi: 10.23736/S0393-2249.16.02563-7

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