It is a minimally invasive surgical treatment for prostate cancer. It involves a few keyhole incisions in order to remove the whole prostate.
The results of cancer control in both laparoscopic and open radical prostatectomy patients are essentially identical. This is confirmed in major institutions across the country where this procedure is being performed on a routine basis.
It is usually about 2½ -3½ hours. Each case differs due to prostate size and individual anatomy. This is comparable to the average time of open surgery.
A majority of patients are discharged one day after a laparoscopic prostatectomy. However, the time of discharge is decided on a case-by-case basis. By the second night, over 90 percent of patients are comfortable enough to go home.
For open surgery, the catheter is removed after two to three weeks. However, with laparoscopic prostatectomy, the catheter is removed seven days after the operation. This is done with the assistance of an X-ray in order to check the status of the site where the urethra has been connected to the bladder.
The average blood loss for a laparoscopic prostatectomy is about 150cc. Therefore, the risk of blood transfusion is extremely low.
Every effort is made to spare the nerves. One of the main advantages of laparoscopic prostatectomy is that the nerves and vessels are magnified and it is much easier to save them. Return of potency could take up to six months and in some individual cases, Viagra has significantly helped.
For the first few weeks, it’s recommended to wear a protective pad. The return of continence is fast and, within a few weeks, over 95 percent of patients have full control of their urination. Occasionally I see patients with mild stress urinary incontinence after surgery which usually resolves by performing Kegel exercises.
Men who are diagnosed with localized prostate cancer are candidates for this procedure. Certainly, any patient who is a candidate for open surgery would have an excellent outcome with laparoscopic prostatectomy.