A minimally-invasive surgical procedure, robotic prostatectomy is done using precisely controlled robotic instruments to make high-precision cuts which will remove the prostate, enhancing the chances of patient’s recovery and well-being. Sitting at the surgical console, the doctor performs the robotic prostatectomy by monitoring and controlling a device consisting of micro-surgical instruments and high-resolution cameras. This is all powered by the latest, state-of-the-art robotic technology, which makes it much easier for doctors to operate precisely and decisively.
Unlike laparoscopic surgery, the instruments used in robotic prostatectomy have the ability to turn in all directions with 90 degrees of articulation and 7 degrees of freedom. During this type of surgery, the robot provides the surgeon with improved precision, dexterity and enhanced visuals, allowing much more freedom than during open or laparoscopic surgeries, while still doing all that through incisions that are 1-2cm in length. With such freedom and precision, the patient’s delicate nerves surrounding the prostate are spared, meaning that after the procedure bladder control and sexual functions do not cease, unlike with open prostatectomy.
It is not really clear as to what causes prostate cancer in the first place. The disease comes into place just like any other cancer, through mutations in the DNA of the cells which causes the cells to grow and divide more rapidly. These cells form a cancerous mass which then imposes on the rest of prostate and can even break off and spread to other parts of the body.
There are, however, certain factors that might increase the risk of getting prostate cancer, and those are:
Age – The risk of getting prostate cancer (just like any other cancer) increases with age.
Race – While there are no studies to show why this is so, black men are at a higher risk of getting prostate cancer than men of other races. Their cancers also have a higher risk of being more aggressive.
Family history – If men in your family before you have had prostate cancer, there is a higher risk that you’ll contract it, as well. Also, a history of breast cancer in the family might also indicate a higher risk of getting prostate cancer.
Obesity – Obesity doesn’t increase the risk of getting prostate cancer, but it does increase the chances that the prostate cancer will be more advanced and aggressive, which makes it much more difficult to treat.
In its earlier stages, it is very possible that prostate cancer will show no signs and symptoms at all. At this time, it is usually discovered through regular prostate checks, or by accident.
More advanced cancers do show symptoms, and they are usually one or more of the following:
Problems with urinating (such as painful urinating)
Decreased force of the stream of urine
Blood in semen
Pelvic area discomfort
The most common way for treating prostate cancer is through surgery. There are a few ways to conduct prostate surgery, including open surgery and laparoscopic surgery. In more recent years, the advent of robotics into the surgical halls has seen it applied in the laparoscopic surgery for prostate cancer.
Using the robotic interface (which is called the da Vinci system), the doctor is able to control the small robotic arms to enter the patient’s body through several small incisions in the abdomen of the patient. He then uses this interface to operate on the inside of the patient with microscopic precision.
Robotic prostatectomy has a few advantages over getting an open prostatectomy or the laparoscopic one (without the involvement of the da Vinci system). These advantages include:
The patient being able to recover more quickly due to smaller incisions
Quicker return to normal activities
Shorter hospitalization (patients are usually back home within 24 hours of the operation)
Smaller risk of complications, such as erectile dysfunction, severe blood loss or incontinence
When deciding on getting a therapy, especially if it is a relatively new one, like the robotic prostatectomy, it is extremely important to make lengthy inquiries about the clinic and the doctor doing the procedure. Find out as much as you can about them. You should also try to get in contact with patients who have had this procedure done on them previously and see what they have to say about it. Find the patients that have been treated at the same clinic that you plan to visit. All of this should give you a better idea of what you should be expecting when getting robotic prostatectomy.
If you are already suffering from a prostate cancer and want to know how robotic prostatectomy can help you, feel free to contact us and find out more!