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Robotic Surgery

Robotic Prostate Cancer Surgery

Robotic Surgery for Prostate Cancer

Important structures surround the prostate, which is located at the base of the pelvis and just below the bladder. The nerves that pass adjacent to the prostate capsule are responsible for penile erection. Similarly, the muscle structures that allow for urinary continence are located close to both the bladder and prostate tissue.

Robotic Prostate Cancer Surgery

During robotic prostate cancer surgery, it is crucial that these structures remain undamaged while cancerous tissue is removed. The main goal here is to remove the prostate without leaving behind cancerous tissue, to protect the nerves that keep sexual functions going, and to keep the structures that keep urine from leaking out of the body from getting damaged while the prostate is removed.

How is Robotic Surgery for Prostate Cancer Performed?

A robot with four arms. One of these arms contains a camera for viewing the interior of the abdomen, while the remaining three arms contain robotic surgical instruments that allow the surgeon to perform surgery. At the level of the patient's navel, incisions measuring between 8 mm and 12 mm are made to insert these arms into the abdomen. Through these incisions, a robotic camera and robotic surgical instruments are then sent into the abdomen.

Additionally, a 12 mm incision is made for the surgical assistant, who assists the surgeon during the procedure. As a result, five 8–12 mm incisions are made in the patient's abdomen during robotic surgeries for prostate cancer. The cancerous prostate tissue is put in a special bag after robotic prostate cancer surgery. At the end of the procedure, one of these cuts is made a little bigger, and the prostate is taken out through this hole.

Who Undergoes Robotic Prostate Cancer Surgery?

Robotic prostate cancer surgery can be used to treat patients with prostate cancer whose disease is localized to the prostate and has not spread (metastasized). When deciding whether to perform robotic prostate cancer surgery, the patient's overall health and any co-existing conditions must also be taken into account.

Does Robotic Prostate Cancer Surgery Damage Sexual Functions?

The prostate is an organ that is surrounded by significant structures and is situated at the base of the pelvis, just below the bladder. Erection is provided by the nerves that directly cross the prostate capsule. It is crucial in robotic prostate cancer surgery that these structures are not harmed while the cancerous tissue is removed.

The main goals here are to remove the prostate while avoiding the spread of cancerous tissue and to safeguard the nerves that support continued sexual activity.

What Should Patients Who Undergo Robotic Prostate Surgery Know?

  • In the initial hours following your surgery, the catheter may give you the impression that you need to urinate. This feeling is temporary.
  • Since general anesthesia is used during your operation, you can drink water six hours after it and eat foods at twelve hours (in case of bowel activity).
  • The prescription medications provided to you upon discharge must be taken as prescribed.
  • Unless otherwise stated, there is no harm in taking a bath on the 7th day after your discharge.
  • You don't need to dress the wounds after your discharge, unless otherwise specified.
  • Unless otherwise specified, you do not need to remove the sutures because absorbable sutures are used in your surgery.
  • Your catheter will be removed 7 days after the operation, a urine retention test will be done, and your urinary continence will be shown to you.
  • For at least three weeks following surgery, you should only sit on soft surfaces, and you should avoid activities like cycling, exercising, and riding horses that could put pressure on the surgical site. It takes roughly six weeks to fully recover. After this time, you can carry out any activities you want.
  • Constipation is to be avoided, especially in the first three weeks following surgery. For this reason, you should stay away from spicy foods and alcoholic, as well as caffeinated, beverages that will affect your bowel movements. In the postoperative period, soft foods, especially fruits and vegetables, should be preferred.

How Much Does Robotic Prostate Surgery Cost ?

The cost of robotic prostate cancer surgery varies depending on the patient and a few different variables. The anticipated patient medical characteristics and the length of the hospital stay have an impact on the cost of the surgery. This calls for considering other factors before providing patients with a price.

One company charges dollars for robotic surgery, robotic arms used on the patient, and robotic prostate surgery. The price includes the robotic surgery system as well as the cost of the surgery and the hospital stay. Due to this, the cost of robotic surgery may be higher than that of laparoscopic surgery.

What is the Difference Between Robotic and Open Prostate Surgery ?

In traditional open surgery, a 15-centimeter incision is made under the umbilicus of the patient. The patient and the surgical team face numerous obstacles during open surgery. This surgery presents a number of difficulties for the patient, including a lengthy hospital stay, a high risk of wound infection, a large scar, and a prolonged period of recovery after the operation.

Long operation times and increased complication rates present difficulties for the surgical team as a result of the restricted surgical field, insufficient hand movements, and a good field of view.

During prostate surgery, the thin structure, mobility, anti-tremor working principle, and advanced image systems of the robotic system's operating arms make it easier to protect structures close to the prostate. Because of this, there is less chance of problems during the operation, less blood is lost, and the operation takes less time.Pain relief, a shorter recovery time, loss of sexual function, and persistent urinary incontinence, all of which have a big effect on social life, will get better over time after surgery.

Robotic Prostate Surgery Side Effects (Complications)

Like all other surgeries, robotic prostate cancer surgery has some risks related to anesthesia. Before surgery, each patient is evaluated by an anesthesiologist in order to assess and minimize these risks. However, it may be necessary to return to open surgery during surgery due to possible adhesions or bleeding. This is an uncommon complication in surgeries performed by experienced surgeons.

The Surgeon's Role in Robotic Prostate Cancer Surgery

Despite its superior mobility and vision, the robot is controlled by a surgeon. The only way robotic prostate cancer surgery can have a successful outcome is if it is performed by an experienced surgical team using a specific technique. These technical differences determine the frequency of side effects that may occur immediately after surgery or many years thereafter.

Robotic Prostate Surgery Time

The duration of robotic prostate cancer surgery can vary depending on a number of patient-specific factors. The duration of the operation is affected by different factors such as the patient's weight, the size and location of the tumor, the necessity of lymph node dissection, and the patient's surgical history. In addition, the surgeon's experience is one of the most significant factors influencing the duration of the operation.

Update Date: 30.03.2023
Prof. Lutfi Tunc
Prof. Lutfi Tunc
Urology, Da Vinci Robotic & Laparoscopic Surgery
The content of this page is for informational purposes only.
Please consult your physician for diagnosis and treatment.



Dr. Tunc received his medical degree from Hacettepe University, Medical School in 1994. He completed his residency training in Urology from 1996 to 2001 at Gazi University, Medical School. In 2000, during his residency, Dr. Tunc was trained for male infertility at Istanbul Memorial Hospital, Department of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility (REI).
Prof. Lutfi TuncProf. Lutfi TuncUrology, Da Vinci Robotic & Laparoscopic Surgery
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