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NO ROBOTS

 ROBOTIC SURGERY DOESN’T APPEAR TO BE BEST WHEN IT COMES TO REMOVING A  MAN’S PROSTATE GLAND, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

Men who decide to have minimally invasive surgery, including endoscopy and use of robotics, to remove their prostate gland have a higher risk of both erectile dysfunction and urinary incontinence, a recent JAMA study found.  Ballantine Carter, a prostate cancer expert at Johns Hopkins, thinks advertising may be to blame.

CARTER: Robotic surgery has gained a tremendous amount of enthusiasm and I think that’s primarily because of marketing, direct to consumer advertising just like in the drug industry, and this has resulted in many patients that even without proof, minimally invasive surgery must be better.    :17

Carter says the take home message is clear.

CARTER:  People who choose robotic surgery I think should realize that the gold standard is still radical open prostatectomy but if they’re convinced that minimally invasive surgery is the way they want to go then they definitely should be choosing someone who does a lot of it.            :14

At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.



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