Prostate Cancer Robotic Surgery and Success Rate – The Da Vinci Procedure

June 25, 2009 by  
Filed under Prostate Cancer

Radical prostatectomy is one of the best known treatments for prostate cancer all over the world because it is a definitive surgery that deals once and for all with the tumor in the prostate gland by having it removed surgically. If there is such a thing as a cure for prostate cancer, a radical prostatectomy is it, especially if administered in the early stages of the disease, when the malignancy is still confined to the prostate gland. However, prostatectomy is hugely limited by one horrible setback ? even with the best techniques offered ? laraposcopy, nerve sparring, or cryosurgery; even when done by some of the best and most experienced surgeons in the field ? the procedure more often than not (ninety percent of the time) ends up with the side effect of impotence for the patient.

This has led to more research to find better procedure to carry out the procedure, and birthed the Da Vinci Surgical System. Approved in July 2000 to perform advanced surgical techniques such as cutting and suturing, the Da Vinci surgical system is the first operative surgical robotic system to be cleared by the FDA, which says something for how effective it has got to be in treating various patients to surgery for various diseases. It is a robotic surgical system made by Intuitive Surgical and designed to facilitate complex surgery using a minimally invasive approach while the entire process is controlled by a surgeon from a console.

The equipment is by no means cheap to come by, with a $1 million Intuitive Surgical Robot-assistant, with arms to connect surgical instruments.

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However, the Da Vinci Surgical System reduces hospital stays by no less than half the time offered by standard surgical methods, which also reduces hospital cost by a considerable percentage; it offers less pain and quicker recovery; plus, it does not leave a large surgical scar after the operation, while it at the same time significantly reduces the risk of side effects ? incontinence or impotence as a result of the treatments. Continence rates stand at a whopping 98 percent at one year post surgery, and even potency rates are better than those offered by standard radical prostatectomies.

There are some limitations to the device though. It is not small enough yet to be used on many children for child surgeries, the apparatus is expensive to acquire, and it can be difficult to master, especially for someone who has spent their entire life learning to do it by their own hands. Naturally, the surgery is not likely to be too easy on the pocket, but if you have your health insurance, you have very little to worry about. Besides, the patent company, Intuitive Surgical, provides a training program to help make up for the steep learning curve required to master the procedure with the surgical robot.

But the future or prostate cancer surgery ? prostatectomy is indeed looking rather bright; you will have to agree with me. All of a sudden, you no longer have to be afraid to go for your annual medical checkups because you don’t want them to find prostate cancer, because you don’t want them to operate, and all of that. Especially with other competitor companies out there looking to match the Da Vinci Surgical Robot, and beat it even, you can be rest assured that the prices and risk of side effects will plummet soon enough, and the success cure rates and survival rates will soar.

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