Robot-assisted radical prostatectomies have grown to become the most common type of surgical treatment for prostate cancer in the United States.

Dr. Quoc-Dien from the Vattikuti Urology Institute, along with the Henry Ford Health System in Detroit, Mich., pulled data from the Nationwide Inpatient Sample (NIS) to compare patients who had robot assisted radical  against those who received open radical prostatectomy from October 2008 to December 2009.

Study findings were presented at the European Association of Urology 27th Annual Congress.

The study resulted in two significant findings. First, it showed that robot-assisted prostatectomy has taken over as the standard surgical care for prostate cancer. About 61 percent of prostatectomies were done robotically in the United States during that time period.

Secondly, robot-assisted prostatectomy was linked to better perioperative outcomes than open prostatectomy.

“There were fewer intraoperative complications, fewer postoperative complications, fewer transfusions, and shorter hospital stays,” said Trinh.“If you do less of an incision, the body isn’t as open; there is an attenuated inflammatory and immune response, and consequently, fewer complications.”

Dr. Joshua Meeks from the Department of Surgery at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York said, “The most important finding is that this is a true snapshot of the rapid rise in the rate of robotic prostatectomy, from 9 percent in 2003 to more than 60 percent of cases in 2008.”

“With such a rise in any surgical modality in a short period of time, the major concern is that technology is utilized with good oncologic technique in patients who will benefit from treatment.” he added.