Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death among men in the United States. Fortunately, if caught early, prostate cancer can be cured. Mount Sinai Urology offers numerous minimally invasive treatment options for men with localized prostate cancer.
Robotic surgery involves making a small incision to insert miniaturized instruments and a camera that produces high-definition, three-dimensional images. Our surgeon sits at a console in the operating suite and views a magnified image of the prostate while the doctor’s hand motions translate into precise micro-movements of the robot’s arms. The robot cannot move or operate on its own; the surgeon is completely in charge. Mount Sinai has one of the busiest robotic surgery programs in the United States, performing more than 1,000 robotic procedures a year. We currently have five robots.
Laparoscopic surgery enables us to perform complex procedures using small openings in the abdominal and pelvic cavity. Many of our faculty are renowned practitioners and also teach national and international courses to other physicians in this procedure.
Ablative technology involves inserting probes into the prostate, then destroying the tumors using cold or heat. Ablation is not generally a first line treatment. It is used when other treatment fails, in particular when radiation is not successful and there are recurrences. Specific ablation techniques include cryoablation or high-intensity focused ultrasound (HiFU). Cryoblation involves freezing the tumor and leaving the surrounding tissue intact. We use hollow tubes that we guide into your prostate using advanced imaging techniques. Technological advances, notably smaller needles and more accurate imaging, are increasing the effectiveness of this treatment. HIFU uses heat from sound waves to destroy tumorous prostate tissue and leave the surrounding tissues intact. Considered an emerging technology, there is limited long-term data studies on the effectiveness or side effects associated with HIFU.
Prostate Cancer Research
Mount Sinai Urology is researching various aspects of prostate cancer. Our labs focus on three distinct research areas: clinical outcomes, genomic research, and biomedical engineering. Our goal is to approach prostate cancer from multiple disciplines to improve treatment outcomes and decrease pain for our patients. We take our research findings and bring them out of the labs and into patient care areas and operating rooms.
- The prostate anatomy: By studying cadavers and surgically removed prostates, we have learned more about the anatomy, which helps us make more informed decisions during prostate surgery. We remove the cancer while preserving the structures vital for sexual functioning and urinary continence. As a result of our efforts, we have one of the highest levels of success with cancer control following robotic prostatectomy.
- Multiphoton microscopy uses low-energy photons to produce fluorescence in prostate tissue. This could help us identify vital structures related to quality of life and cancer control during robotic surgery.
- Magnetic resonance imaging fusion imaging and other imaging techniques can help us better identify what aggressive prostate cancer looks like. Our research helps us better target prostate cancer lesions to provide a more accurate prostate cancer diagnosis.
- Genomic research: By building a comprehensive resource of prostate cancer tissue and other related materials, we are learning to identify the markers (e.g., proteins and gene mutations) that enable us to measure an individual’s disease risk, better predict disease progression, and, as a result, more effectively individualize our prostate cancer care.
- Prostate cancer immunotherapy: We are working to develop one of the first prostate cancer vaccines to treat advanced prostate cancer. Prostate cancer vaccines use the body’s immune system to combat the disease.