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New Surgical Robot Found Safe and Effective for Localized Prostate Cancer Surgery

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 20 May 2022
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Image: The KangDuo surgical robot (Photo courtesy of Peking University First Hospital)
Image: The KangDuo surgical robot (Photo courtesy of Peking University First Hospital)

An initial evaluation of a new surgical robotic system has found it to be "feasible, safe, and effective" for the treatment of early-stage prostate cancer. The new system, called the KangDuo Surgical Robot-01, offers high accuracy and surgical success with low complication rates and a high comfort level for the surgeon – and may provide a less-costly alternative to current surgical robots.

In the study, researchers at Peking University (Beijing, China) analyzed their experience using the KangDuo system to perform robot-assisted radical prostatectomy (RARP) in 16 men with localized prostate cancer. The patients, median age 66 years, had localized cancers that had not spread beyond the prostate gland. Initial results showed that the KangDuo system is feasible, safe, and effective for management of localized prostate cancer. All procedures were successfully completed, with no major problems requiring conversion to traditional open surgery. Seventy-five percent of patients had "clear" surgical margins, suggesting that the cancer was completely removed by surgery. Urinary incontinence is a potential complication after prostate cancer. In the new study, the continence rate was 87.5% (14 of 16 patients) at one month after catheter removal. There were no serious complications and no need for blood transfusions.

Developed in China, the KangDuo system has shown promising results in other types of operations. The KangDuo robotic system incorporates several important features to optimize hand-eye coordination and allow for normal and adjustable neck posture. On ergonomic evaluation, the surgeon reported a "high level of comfort" using the robotic surgeon, with "acceptable" levels of mental and physical demand. Further refinements are planned, including a tactile feedback system and the ability to perform long-distance operations using 5G technology. Approval of the KangDuo system is expected soon, first in Chinese market and worldwide shortly thereafter.

"Although the price has not yet been determined, the emergence of new robotic surgery systems lowers the cost of robotic surgery, which could benefit more patients," the researchers stated.

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