Patient Story

Ken White had robotic prostate cancer surgeryRobotic Prostate Cancer Surgery
Within a month of having robotic-assisted prostate cancer surgery, Ken White was back riding ten-mile trips on local bike trails. Read Ken's story.

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Robotics - Urology Video Lectures

Robotic Surgery – Urology

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Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form inside the prostate. While prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men, the good news is that with increased awareness and screening, more men are diagnosed early. As a result, most cancers are found at an early stage when the cancer is most treatable.

When prostate cancer is believed to be confined within the prostate gland, there are a range of treatment options available. These may include:

  • surgery to remove the prostate (known as radical prostatectomy)
  • radiation (external beam or radioactive seed implants)
  • watchful waiting
  • cryosurgery
  • hormonal therapy

Treatment options depend on a number of factors, including the stage of the disease, the patient’s age, his health or personal preference. After discussing treatment options with your doctor, if you decide to undergo surgery to remove the cancerous prostate, you may be a candidate for a new breakthrough surgical technology called the da Vinci Surgical System. A new category in minimally invasive surgery, this robotic-assisted surgery involves state-of-the-art technology which enables surgeons to perform this delicate operation with superior vision, precision, dexterity and control.

incision comparison of open vs robotic prostatectomy

Through a few tiny incisions, your surgeon controls the highly precise instruments attached to robotic arms during the entire operation. Your surgeon can reach tissues from many angles to remove the prostate containing the cancer cells. The goal of this surgery is to remove the cancer entirely while preserving important nerves and blood vessels that control urinary and sexual function.

Traditionally, prostatectomy has been performed through open surgery involving a large open incision to obtain access to the prostate. This type of surgery results in a lengthy recovery period and may cause significant pain. Performing a prostatectomy with da Vinci offers the following potential benefits compared to open surgery:

  • Excellent cancer control
  • Faster return of erectile (sexual) function
  • Faster return of bladder control (urinary continence)
  • Less blood loss
  • Less need for a blood transfusion
  • Less pain
  • Lower risk of complications
  • Lower risk of wound infection
  • Shorter hospital stay
  • Fewer days with catheter
  • Faster recovery and return to normal activities

Kidney Cancer

Each year over 208,000 people are diagnosed with kidney cancer worldwide. Kidney cancer is relatively resistant to noninvasive treatments like radiation and chemotherapy. As a result, the gold standard treatment for localized kidney cancer is surgery. Kidney surgery 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 precision, visualization and control compared to open surgery.

Da Vinci Surgery uses the best techniques of open surgery and applies them to a robotic-assisted, minimally invasive approach. The precision, vision and control of the da Vinci Surgical System allows your surgeon to provide a precise, minimally invasive treatment for kidney cancer. If your tumor is localized and small, the recommended treatment of choice is a partial nephrectomy; removing just the tumor and not the entire kidney. And, preserving your kidney can help prevent future kidney disease.

If you have been diagnosed with kidney cancer, you may be a candidate for da Vinci Surgery using state-of-the-art technology to help your doctor perform a more precise operation compared to conventional surgery. It offers numerous potential benefits over open surgery including:

daVinci surgery for kidney cancer Watch a video about da Vinci surgery
for kidney cancer

  • Excellent cancer control
  • Shorter hospital stay
  • Less blood loss
  • Less pain
  • Precise tumor removal
  • Excellent chance of preserving the kidney where indicated
  • Lower risk of operative complications
  • Faster recovery and return to normal activities

Urinary Obstruction

Surgery to treat a urinary obstruction, known as pyeloplasty, removes a blockage in the urinary system. After your surgeon removes the blockage, he will reattach the healthy part of the kidney to the healthy part of the ureter – the narrow tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder.

incision comparison of open vs robotic pyeloplasty surgery

If your doctor has recommended pyeloplasty for your condition, you may be a candidate for da Vinci robotic-assisted surgery. The da Vinci system provides a minimally invasive approach using state-of-the-art technology that helps your surgeon perform a more precise operation compared to conventional surgery.




 Robotic-assisted pyeloplasty offers several potential benefits over open surgery including:

  • Significantly less pain
  • Less blood loss
  • Fewer transfusions
  • Less risk of infection
  • Less scarring
  • Shorter hospital stay
  • Faster recovery and return to normal activities

Meet the Robotic Surgeons

KumarSanjaya Kumar, MD, FACS, graduated with a medical degree from the University of Delhi, India, 1979. He performed general surgery internships at the University of Delhi and Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York, NY. His urology residency was completed at UMass Medical Center, Worcester, MA. Dr. Kumar continued his training with a research fellowship in renal transplantation and organ preservation at UMass and a senior fellowship in transplant surgery at Washington Hospital Center, DC.

Board-certified in urology, Dr. Kumar is a member of the urologic surgical staff at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA and he is an Assistant Professor at Harvard Medical School. His clinical interests include robotic-assisted surgery, laparoscopic surgery, kidney, bladder, prostate problems, tumors/cancers, sexual dysfunction, stones, voiding dysfunction, incontinence and infertility. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Kumar at his office in Milford call 508-482-5411.

MichliEddie Michli, MD, earned his degree in medicine from the State University of New York Health Science Center in Brooklyn, NY, 2001. He completed his residency in general surgery and was chief resident in urology at Brookdale University Hospital Medical Center, Brooklyn, NY. Dr. Michli continued his training at Cooper University Hospital, Camden, NJ with a fellowship in minimally invasive and robotics surgery.

Dr. Michli is board-certified in urology. His clinical interests include robotic and laparoscopic assisted surgery for benign and malignant urological disease, BPH, urinary incontinence/voiding dysfunction, stone disease, sexual dysfunction. Prior to joining Dr. Kumar at Tri-County Urology in Milford, Dr. Michli was in private practice in Silver Spring, MD. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Michli, call 508-482-5411.

Jeffrey Steinberg, urologistJeffrey Steinberg, MD, FACS graduated from Temple University School of Medicine in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with a degree in medicine in 1986.  He completed an internship and residency in surgery at Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital.  Dr. Steinberg continued his training at Harvard Medical School, performing a urology residency and subsequently received a Master of Science in Health Care Management from the Harvard School of Public Health.

Since completion of his residency at the Harvard Program in Urology, Dr. Steinberg has practiced urological surgery for over 20 years with a focus on prostate cancer and men’s health.  In addition, he has been certified in robotic surgery since 2005. He co-founded New England’s largest prostate cancer support group in the Harvard Longwood area and the annual Boston Prostate Cancer Walk which has raised over $10 million for prostate cancer research.  He also founded the Boston Urological Society in 2005 and patented the first portable cystoscope.

Board certified in urology, Dr. Steinberg has held academic appointments at Harvard Medical School, the University of Massachusetts Medical School and the University of Connecticut School of Medicine.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Steinberg at his office in Hopedale, call 508-473-6333.

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