Can We Accomplish Better Oncological Results with Robot-Assisted Radical Prostatectomy?J Endourol. 2017 04; 31(S1):S54-S58.JE
Surgical removal with radical prostatectomy has been a cornerstone for the treatment of prostate cancer and is associated with level 1 evidence for survival advantage compared with watchful waiting. Since the first structured robotic program was launched in 2000, robot-assisted radical prostatectomy (RARP) has had a rapid diffusion and surpassed its open radical prostatectomy (ORP) and laparoscopic radical prostatectomy (LRP) counterparts in the United States and is progressively expanding in other countries. Interestingly, this common acceptance of RARP was initially driven in the paucity of robust clinical evidence. There is still lack of level 1 evidence with prospective randomized trials on the oncologic outcomes of RARP. In that scenario, the clinician has to rely on retrospective data and systemic and meta-analyses. In comparison with ORP and LRP, RARP has proven to reach at least equivalent oncological outcomes. Lower rate of positive surgical margins may probably be achieved with RARP in pT2 patients. Although urologists were initially reluctant to embrace RARP in high-risk patients and lymph node yield was low, contemporary series have revealed that RARP and extended lymphadenectomy may be safely performed with obtaining similar (or better) nodal yields compared with ORP. Surgeon experience is universally of utmost importance in obtaining good outcomes. We will need to wait for long-term results of contemporary series to comprehend the impact of RARP on cancer-specific survival and overall survival. Using novel imaging before surgery and frozen section analysis during surgery may allow for superior oncological outcomes.