The bladder is an organ that stores urine and is located inside the lower part of the abdomen. Bladder cancer is a malignant growth in cells that comprise the lining of the bladder. More than 67,000 new cases of bladder cancer are diagnosed in the U.S. yearly.
Treatment options depend on the stage of bladder cancer. There are four standard treatment options for bladder cancer:
- Biologic Therapy
Depending on the patient's type and stage of bladder cancer, several treatments may be used in combination to increase the likelihood of a cure. Surgery is the dominant bladder cancer therapy chosen, and is performed in more than 90% of bladder cancers (either alone or in combination with another therapy). For patients with muscle invasive bladder cancer, a radical cystectomy is the preferred form of treatment.
A cystectomy is the removal of all or part of the bladder and possibly the removal of nearby lymph nodes and organs that may contain cancer. If the bladder is removed, the surgeon creates a new way for urine to leave the body. In some cases, a urinary diversion is performed to create a new way for the body to store and pass urine.
Cystectomy is traditionally performed using an open approach, which requires a large abdominal incision. Another approach, conventional laparoscopy, is less invasive, but limits the doctor's dexterity, visualization, and control, compared to open surgery.
If your doctor recommends surgery for bladder cancer, you may be a candidate for a minimally invasive approach: da Vinci Cystectomy.
da Vinci Surgery uses state-of-the-art technology to help your doctor perform a more precise operation than conventional instrumentation allows. It offers numerous potential benefits over a conventional open surgery, including:
- Significantly less pain
- Less blood loss
- Fewer transfusions
- Less risk of infection
- Less scarring
- Shorter hospital stay
- Shorter recovery time
- Better clinical outcomes, in many cases
da Vinci Cystectomy incorporates the best techniques of open surgery and applies them to a robotic-assisted, minimally invasive approach.
The precision and dexterity afforded by the da Vinci Surgical System's advanced instrumentation facilitates a minimally invasive approach for treating bladder cancer. As with any surgery, these benefits cannot be guaranteed, as surgery is patient and procedure specific.