A Canadian study looked at quality control for surgeons performing RP:Are urologic surgeons performing robot-assisted radical prostatectomy at the University of Alberta meeting surgical quality performance benchmarks? The PROCURE-02 quality assurance study
Introduction: Robot-assisted radical prostatectomy (RARP) is a standard of care primary treatment for men with clinically localized prostate cancer (CLPC). The 2010 Canadian Urological Association (CUA) consensus guideline examining surgical quality performance for radical prostatectomy suggested benchmarks for surgical performance. To date, no study has examined whether Canadian surgeons are achieving these benchmarks. We determined the proportion of University of Alberta (UA) urologic surgeons achieving the CUA surgical quality performance outcome (SQPO) benchmarks.Methods
: A retrospective quality assurance analysis of prospectively collected data from the PROstate Cancer Urosurgery Repository of Edmonton (PROCURE) was performed. Men who underwent RARP for CLPC between September 2007 and May 2018 by one of seven surgeons were analyzed. SQPO were an unadjusted pT2–R1 resection rate <25%, blood transfusion rate <10%, rectal injury rate <1%, and 90-day mortality rate <1%. Descript
ive statistics were used to determine the proportion of surgeons achieving the benchmarks.Results
: Data were evaluable for 2821 men. Seven of 7 (100%) surgeons achieved a blood transfusion rate <10%, rectal injury rate <1%, and 90-day mortality rate <1%. However, only six of seven surgeons achieved an unadjusted pT2–R1 resection rate <25%; one surgeon had an unadjusted pT2–R1 resection rate of 27.9%. Limitations include the lack of centralized pathology review for surgical margin status by a dedicated genitourinary pathologist.Conclusions
: UA surgeons are achieving the CUA SQPO benchmarks for blood transfusion, rectal injury, and perioperative mortality. However, not all UA urologists are achieving a pT2– R1 resection rate <25%. Surgical quality performance initiatives designed to improve cancer control may be warranted."
Positive surgical margins are unavoidable in some cases; in others, they are the result of surgical error. SM+ rates are one measure of how well a surgeon is doing when learning and perfecting the difficult RP procedure. As I usually mention for men going the RP route, your choice of a highly experienced surgeon is the most important factor to ensure the best possible outcome for your status. When interviewing surgeons, always ask for specific outcome stats.