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Acquisition of robotic technology leads to increased rates of prostate cancer surgery
Date:3/10/2011

A new study conducted by researchers at NYU Langone Medical Center and Yale School of Medicine shows that when hospitals acquire surgical robotic technology, men in that region are more likely to have prostate cancer surgery. The study, "The Association between Diffusion of the Surgical Robot and Radical Prostatectomy Rates", was published this week in the online edition of the journal Medical Care.

"The use of the surgical robot to treat prostate cancer is an instructive example of an expensive medical technology becoming rapidly adopted without clear proof of its benefit," said Danil V. Makarov, MD, MHS, lead author and assistant professor, Department of Urology at NYU Langone Medical Center and assistant professor of Health Policy at NYU Wagner School of Public Health. "Policymakers must carefully consider what the added-value is of costly new medical devices, because, once approved, they will most certainly be used."

This is the first study determining the impact of surgical robot acquisition on the rate of surgery to treat prostate cancer and concludes that it increases surgical volume. Surgical robotic technology for the treatment of prostate cancer has been rapidly adopted across the United States since FDA approval in 2001. By 2009, over 85% of men undergoing prostatectomy had robotic surgery.

This retrospective cohort study surveyed the regional and hospital rates of radical prostatectomy surgeries between 2001 and 2005 and looked at whether they were affected by the acquisition of surgical robotic technology. During this early adoption phase, 36 of 71 regions studied had at least one hospital with a surgical robot and 67 of the 554 hospitals studied had a surgical robot. According to the study, regions and hospitals with robots had higher increases in radical prostatectomy than those without. Additionally, hospitals with surgical robots increased surgery cases an average of 29.1 per year while those without robots ex
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Contact: Lauren Woods
lauren.woods@nyumc.org
212-404-3555
NYU Langone Medical Center / New York University School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert

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