The chances of a prostate cancer patient experiencing severe side effectives after a prostatectomy depend not only on the technique used, but also the skill of the surgeon.
A new report from the University of California, Los Angeles found the chances of erectile dysfunction and incontinence following the removal of a tumourous gland could be reduced if a surgeon has perform upwards of 1,000 operations and actively seeks to improve their skills.
Scientists also identified that newer techniques, which prioritise the gentle handling of the delicate nerves around the prostate, can also make a difference to erectile function post surgery.
"A technique for nerve-sparing surgery has many subtleties that are influenced by training, talent, a desire to improve, and meticulous review of technique and outcomes," said lead author of the study Dr Jim Hu.
The National Institute for Clinical Excellence has recently recommended the use of abiraterone for prostate cancer patients who chose to opt for chemotherapy instead of surgery.