A case-mix-adjusted comparison of early oncological outcomes of open and robotic prostatectomy performed by experienced high volume surgeons

Departments of Urology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX, USA.
BJU International (Impact Factor: 3.13). 02/2013; 111(2):184-5. DOI: 10.1111/j.1464-410X.2012.11643.x
Source: PubMed
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    ABSTRACT: Study Type - Therapy (systematic review) Level of Evidence 1a What's known on the subject? and What does the study add? Research on the subject has shown that robotic surgery is more costly than both laparoscopic and open approaches due to the initial cost of purchase, annual maintenance and disposable instruments. However, both robotic and laparoscopic approaches have reduced blood loss and hospital stay and robotic procedures have better short term post-operative outcomes such as continence and sexual function. Some studies indicate that the robotic approach may have a shorter learning curve. However, factors such as reduced learning curve, shorter hospital stay and reduced length of surgery are currently unable to compensate for the excess costs of robotic surgery. This review concludes that robotic surgery should be targeted for cost efficiency in order to fully reap the benefits of this advanced technology. The excess cost of robotic surgery may be compensated by improved training of surgeons and therefore a shorter learning curve; and minimising costs of initial purchase and maintenance. The review finds that only a few studies gave an itemised breakdown of costs for each procedure, making accurate comparison of costs difficult. Furthermore, there is a lack of long term follow up of clinical outcomes, making it difficult to accurately assess long term post-operative outcomes. A breakdown of costs and studies of long term outcomes are needed to accurately assess the effectiveness of robotic surgery in urology. OBJECTIVES: •  Although robotic technology is becoming increasingly popular for urological procedures, barriers to its widespread dissemination include cost and the lack of long term outcomes. This systematic review analyzed studies comparing the use of robotic with laparoscopic and open urological surgery. •  These three procedures were assessed for cost efficiency in the form of direct as well as indirect costs that could arise from length of surgery, hospital stay, complications, learning curve and postoperative outcomes. METHODS: •  A systematic review was performed searching Medline, Embase and Web of Science databases. Two reviewers identified abstracts using online databases and independently reviewed full length papers suitable for inclusion in the study. RESULTS: •  Laparoscopic and robot assisted radical prostatectomy are superior with respect to reduced hospital stay (range 1-1.76 days and 1-5.5 days, respectively) and blood loss (range 482-780 mL and 227-234 mL, respectively) when compared with the open approach (range 2-8 days and 1015 mL). Robot assisted radical prostatectomy remains more expensive (total cost ranging from US $2000-$39 215) than both laparoscopic (range US $740-$29 771) and open radical prostatectomy (range US $1870-$31 518). •  This difference is due to the cost of robot purchase, maintenance and instruments. The reduced length of stay in hospital (range 1-1.5 days) and length of surgery (range 102-360 min) are unable to compensate for the excess costs. •  Robotic surgery may require a smaller learning curve (20-40 cases) although the evidence is inconclusive. CONCLUSIONS: •  Robotic surgery provides similar postoperative outcomes to laparoscopic surgery but a reduced learning curve. •  Although costs are currently high, increased competition from manufacturers and wider dissemination of the technology could drive down costs. •  Further trials are needed to evaluate long term outcomes in order to evaluate fully the value of all three procedures in urological surgery.
    BJU International 03/2012; DOI:10.1111/j.1464-410X.2012.11015.x · 3.13 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The prostate component of the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian (PLCO) Cancer Screening Trial was undertaken to determine whether there is a reduction in prostate cancer mortality from screening using serum prostate-specific antigen (PSA) testing and digital rectal examination (DRE). Mortality after 7-10 years of follow-up has been reported previously. We report extended follow-up to 13 years after the trial. A total of 76 685 men, aged 55-74 years, were enrolled at 10 screening centers between November 1993 and July 2001 and randomly assigned to the intervention (organized screening of annual PSA testing for 6 years and annual DRE for 4 years; 38 340 men) and control (usual care, which sometimes included opportunistic screening; 38 345 men) arms. Screening was completed in October 2006. All incident prostate cancers and deaths from prostate cancer through 13 years of follow-up or through December 31, 2009, were ascertained. Relative risks (RRs) were estimated as the ratio of observed rates in the intervention and control arms, and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated assuming a Poisson distribution for the number of events. Poisson regression modeling was used to examine the interactions with respect to prostate cancer mortality between trial arm and age, comorbidity status, and pretrial PSA testing. All statistical tests were two-sided. Approximately 92% of the study participants were followed to 10 years and 57% to 13 years. At 13 years, 4250 participants had been diagnosed with prostate cancer in the intervention arm compared with 3815 in the control arm. Cumulative incidence rates for prostate cancer in the intervention and control arms were 108.4 and 97.1 per 10 000 person-years, respectively, resulting in a relative increase of 12% in the intervention arm (RR = 1.12, 95% CI = 1.07 to 1.17). After 13 years of follow-up, the cumulative mortality rates from prostate cancer in the intervention and control arms were 3.7 and 3.4 deaths per 10 000 person-years, respectively, resulting in a non-statistically significant difference between the two arms (RR = 1.09, 95% CI = 0.87 to 1.36). No statistically significant interactions with respect to prostate cancer mortality were observed between trial arm and age (P(interaction) = .81), pretrial PSA testing (P(interaction) = .52), and comorbidity (P(interaction) = .68). After 13 years of follow-up, there was no evidence of a mortality benefit for organized annual screening in the PLCO trial compared with opportunistic screening, which forms part of usual care, and there was no apparent interaction with age, baseline comorbidity, or pretrial PSA testing.
    CancerSpectrum Knowledge Environment 01/2012; 104(2):125-32. DOI:10.1093/jnci/djr500 · 14.07 Impact Factor
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    European Urology 02/2011; 59(5):708-9; discussion 710-1. DOI:10.1016/j.eururo.2011.01.049 · 10.48 Impact Factor