In a nutshell
This study aimed to compare traditional open surgery and robotic surgery to treat prostate cancer in terms of side effects. It found that there was no difference in side-effects like sexual function or urinary problems between the two surgeries.
Prostate surgery is a treatment option for prostate cancer. This surgery can be carried out by classic methods (open surgery) or by using special tools, often called robotic surgery. Open surgery is associated with long-term side effects. It is thought that robotic surgery can help with side-effects as smaller cuts can be made during surgery. The use of robotic surgery in prostate cancer is unclear.
Methods & findings
This study included 196 men with prostate cancer. 150 men were randomly assigned to robotic surgery and 146 to open surgery. They were followed up for 24 months after the surgery. Side effects such as urinary and sexual problems were measured through questionnaires.
Symptoms including urinary flow or urinating at night did not differ between the men in the two groups at six months, 12 months or 2 years after treatment. The patient-reported sexual function was also not different between the two groups.
Cancer recurred in 9% of patients in the open surgery group and in 3% of the robotic surgery patients.
The bottom line
This study found that there was no difference in urinary symptoms or sexual function in patients who had open or robotic surgery to treat prostate cancer.
The fine print
The two groups of patients did not have the same treatments after surgery. This means that we cannot determine which surgery is better for cancer recurrence.
Published By :
The Lancet. Oncology
Jul 12, 2018
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