Objective To compare the early peri-operative, oncological and continence outcomes of Retzius-sparing robot-assisted laparoscopic radical prostatectomy (RALP) with those of conventional RALP. Materials and Methods Data from 50 patients who underwent Retzius-sparing RALP and who had at least 6 months of follow-up were prospectively collected and compared with a database of patients who underwent conventional RALP. Propensity-score matching was performed using seven preoperative variables, and postoperative variables were compared between the groups. Results A total of 581 patients who had undergone RALP were evaluated in the present study. Although preoperative characteristics were different before propensity-score matching, these differences were resolved after matching. There were no significant differences in mean length of hospital stay, estimated blood loss, intra- and postoperative complication rates, pathological stage of disease, Gleason scores, tumour volumes and positive surgical margins between the conventional RALP and Retzius-sparing RALP groups. Console time was shorter for Retzius-sparing RALP. Recovery of early continence (defined as 0 pads used) at 4 weeks after RALP was significantly better in the Retzius-sparing RALP group than in the conventional RALP group. Conclusions The present results suggest that Retzius-sparing RALP, although technically more demanding, was as feasible and effective as conventional RALP, and also led to a shorter operating time and faster recovery of early continence. Retzius-sparing RALP was also reproducible and achievable in all cases.
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