The surgical removal of the prostate should only be performed in experienced clinics according to the German Prostate Cancer Guideline. However, a recent study shows that this recommendation is largely ignored. Experts call for action to improve patient care.
Most Common Cancer Disease in German Men
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in German men and the third most common cause of cancer death. Sufferers who undergo surgery often experience significant impairments in quality of life. In many cases, treated men are incontinent and impotent after prostate surgery. According to scientists, stem cells injected into the penis can sometimes repair erectile dysfunction.
It is also a problem that the removal of the prostate in cancer is often performed in clinics with little experience. Experts want to change this now.
Recommendation largely ignored
The German Prostate Cancer Guideline recommends at least 50 operations per year as a benchmark for centers offering complete surgical removal of the prostate gland. But this recommendation is increasingly ignored in Germany. This is the conclusion of a study by the Clinic and Polyclinic for Urology of the University Hospital Carl Gustav Carus Dresden.
The scientific paper entitled "Robots drive the German radical prostatectomy market" has now been published in the journal "Prostate Cancer and Prostatic Diseases ".
At least 50 interventions per year
According to a report from the Dresden University Hospital, the study shows that hospitals are increasingly carrying out these radical operations even though they fall short of the recommended minimum number of cases.
The study leader dr. Johannes Huber summarized the analysis of all 221,000 interventions in Germany from 2006 to 2013 as follows: "Instead of the necessary centralization of care, more and more patients are operated on in clinics that make less than the recommended 50 interventions per year. Between 2006 and 2013, the proportion of these patients has almost doubled from 16 to 28 per cent. "
According to Huber, the study shows for the first time that the German health care system continues to fall short of the lead recommendation for prostate radical operations of theUrology removed. This has a huge impact on patient safety and quality of care.
The Dresden urologists therefore call for measures to centralize patient care. Because surgery in high-case hospitals increases patient safety and less often leads to serious side effects such as impotence or incontinence.
"Many healthcare systems abroad are already using mandatory minimum volume catalogs to centralize complicated operations. In Germany, however, such a regulation has only been available for six procedures such as liver and kidney transplants, surgery on the coronary vessels or in operations of the pancreas and esophagus.- The radical surgery of the prostate is not one of them, "says Huber.
radiotherapy as effective as surgery
Interesting in this context are also new findings that British scientists recently published. According to researchers from Oxford University and the University of Bristol, radiotherapy for prostate cancer is as effective as OPs. And they have the advantage that there are generally fewer sexual problems or urinary problems after that. However, this type of treatment is only used by a few patients.(ad)