Purpose: To clarify the effects of pathologic prostate specimen weight on perioperative outcomes in laparoscopic radical prostatectomy (LRP), a subject that has recently been analyzed in numerous smaller series.
Patients and methods: Data from our Institution Review Board-approved database was queried with attention to operative, perioperative, and pathologic outcomes. For analysis, LRP patients were divided into three groups by pathologic specimen weight: <35 g, 35 to 70 g, and >70 g, and outcomes assessed. Outcomes were also analyzed using prostate weight as a continuous variable by multivariate regression.
Results: Between April 2001 and April 2007, 802 consecutive patients underwent LRP for localized prostate cancer, and complete perioperative data were available for 720 (90%) of these men. Mean age, body mass index (BMI), preoperative prostate-specific antigen (PSA) and postoperative Gleason score were 57.6 years, 26.7 kg/m(2), 5.9 ng/mL, and 6.3, respectively. Mean specimen weight was 51.3 g. When compared with lighter counterparts, patients with the heaviest glands were older (P < 0.01), had a higher PSA level (P < 0.01), and had a higher percentage of pathologically organ-confined disease (P < 0.01). By multivariate regression analysis, increasing prostate weight was associated with longer operative times, more blood loss, longer lengths of stay, and more perioperative complications (all P < 0.05). Of note, smaller glands trended toward a higher rate of positive surgical margins overall (P = 0.07) and in pT(2) disease (P = 0.05), but there was no association between surgical margins and gland size in pT(3) disease (P = 0.27). Increasing BMI was also independently predictive of positive margins regardless of prostate size (P < 0.01).
Conclusions: Although perioperative outcomes are generally excellent after LRP irrespective of gland size, a larger prostate size is associated with longer operative time, more blood loss, longer length of stay, and increased complications. Patients with smaller glands and organ-confined disease appear to have a higher rate of positive surgical margins.