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Evidence to Improve Care

Robotic-Assisted Radical Prostatectomy for Localized Prostate Cancer

Ontario Health Technology Advisory Committee Recommendation

  • The Ontario Health Technology Advisory Committee recommends against publicly funding the robotic surgical system for radical prostatectomy

Read the Full Ontario Health Technology Advisory Committee Recommendation Report Here



Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men in Canada. It forms in the prostate gland of the male reproductive system and often grows very slowly. However, in some patients, prostate cancer grows more quickly, and can lead to decreased flow of urine, increased need to urinate, painful urination and ejaculation, and death.

One of the possible treatments for prostate cancer is to surgically remove the prostate gland. This is known as radical prostatectomy. It can be performed in an open, laparoscopic, or robot-assisted approach. The open approach is the traditional surgical approach and involves a large incision. In contrast, laparoscopic and robot-assisted approaches are minimally invasive and performed through small keyhole incisions.

The robot-assisted approach is the newest method which uses a surgical robotic system with arms that the surgeon controls to perform the radical prostatectomy.


Robotic Surgical System for Radical Prostatectomy

We reviewed the evidence to evaluate the effectiveness, safety, and cost-effectiveness of the robotic surgical system for radical prostatectomy, compared with the open and conventional laparoscopic approaches.


Robotic Surgical System for Radical Prostatectomy: A Health Technology Assessment
April 2017

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We reviewed a robotic surgical system used to perform a radical prostatectomy. Read the latest draft recommendation from the Ontario Health Technology Advisory Committee and submit your feedback.

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Date posted: April 10, 2017
Closing date for public comment: May 1, 2017



Health Technology Assessment at Health Quality Ontario

As part of our core function to promote health care supported by the best available evidence, we use established scientific methods to analyze the evidence for a wide range of health interventions, including diagnostic tests, medical devices, interventional and surgical procedures, health care programs and models of care. These analyses are informed by input from a range of individuals, including patients and clinical experts. The Ontario Health Technology Advisory Committee (OHTAC) – a committee of the Health Quality Ontario board of directors – reviews the evidence and makes recommendations about whether health care interventions should be publicly funded or not. Draft recommendations are posted on the Health Quality Ontario website for feedback. Final recommendations are approved by our board of directors and then shared with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. For more detailed information, visit our Evidence to Improve Care pages.

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