Robotic surgery leads to faster recovery

Robotic surgery leads to faster recovery

Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men, but when caught early it can be treated successfully. (Just ask the 2 million prostate cancer survivors in the United States today.)

Prostate cancer is often present without any symptoms, although some symptoms can include pain with urination, difficulty urinating or blood in the urine. Men experiencing any of these should see their primary care physician for evaluation. Typically, evaluation includes a rectal exam and/or a PSA blood test to measure prostate-specific antigens, a protein produced by the prostate gland.  Depending on the findings, the patient may be referred to an urologist.

Causes of prostate cancer are unknown, but common risk factors include age, race and family history. The American Cancer Society estimates that in 2013 there will be about 238,590 new cases of prostate cancer diagnosed in the United States. The most common treatment is prostatectomy, or surgical removal of the prostate gland. For many patients, prospective surgery can feel intimidating or cause fear of loss of male functions. Patients who receive this treatment now have access to an advanced surgical technique to remove their cancer and return them to their daily activities in record time.

daVinci robot
The daVinci robot is an alternative to traditional open surgery and is less invasive for the patient. Dr. Layne Rousseau, an urologist at Dreyer Medical Clinic in Aurora, Ill., performed the first robotic prostatectomy in Aurora in December 2012.

Dr. Rousseau explains that the robot uses a 3D high-definition camera, which “gives me significant magnification and allows me to see detail that would not normally be visible during traditional open surgery.” This provides Dr. Rousseau with the means to perform surgery in a very accurate and thorough manner, positively impacting the patient’s outcome.

Robotic prostatectomy offers patients many benefits compared to open surgery, which include:

  • Less invasive surgery and smaller incision
  • Less pain and blood loss
  • Ability to preserve the nerves around the prostate
  • Better chance for return of bladder control
  • Shorter hospital stay for the patient
  • Faster recovery and return to normal activities

If you or a loved one has been recently diagnosed with prostate cancer, or suspect you may be at risk, please contact your primary care physician.

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health enews Staff
health enews Staff

health enews staff is a group of experienced writers from our Advocate Aurora Health sites, which also includes freelance or intern writers.