V8-10: Robotic Salvage Retroperitoneal and Pelvic Lymph Node Dissection for "Node-only" Recurrent Prostate

V8-10: Robotic Salvage Retroperitoneal and Pelvic Lymph Node Dissection for "Node-only" Recurrent Prostate Cancer



Despite primary treatment of prostate cancer with surgery or external radiation therapy, 20-40% of patients relapse within 5 years and 25-35% progress to metastatic disease. Salvage lymph node dissection has been proposed in patients with biochemical recurrence from prostate cancer and nodal involvement only, although the optimal template remains a question of debate. Herein we describe the technique of robotic high-extended salvage retroperitoneal and pelvic lymphadenectomy (sRPLND+PLND) for "node-only" recurrent prostate cancer.


Twenty patients underwent robotic sRPLND+PLND for "node-only" recurrent prostate cancer after definitive primary treatment as identified by carbon-11 acetate PET/CT. Our anatomic template extends from bilateral renal artery and vein cranially up to Cloquets node caudally, completely excising lymphatic-fatty tissue from aorto-caval and iliac vascular trees. Meticulous node-mapping assessed nodes at 4 prospectively-assigned anatomic zones.


Median age at salvage RPLND was 64 (45-76), median BMI was 26.4 kg/m2 (21.4 - 41.2), previous primary treatment was radical prostatectomy in 17 patients (85%) and external radiation therapy in 4 patients (15%), median time from primary treatment was 32 months (4-160) and median PSA at sRPLND+PLND was 2.1 ng/dl (0.28 - 38.17). Median operative time was 5 hours (3.5-5.8), blood loss was 100 ml (50-300), and hospital stay was 1 day (1-3). No patient had intra-operative complication, open conversion or blood transfusion. Four patients had Clavien II post-operative complications: flank/scrotal ecchymosis in 1 patient (5%), chylous ascites in 2 patients (10%) and neuropraxia/foot drop in 1 patient (5%). Final histology confirmed positive nodes in 16 patients (20%). Mean and median (range) number of nodes excised per patient was 89 and 80 (41-132) respectively. Mean and median (range) number of positive nodes was 21 and 6 (0-109) respectively. At 2 months post-operatively median (range) PSA was 0.76 ng/mL (


Herein we describe the detailed technique of robotic high-extended salvage RPLND+PLND for "node-only" recurrent prostate cancer and present the initial experience. Robotic sRPLND+PLND duplicates open surgery, with superior nodal counts and decreased morbidity compared to the published literature. Longer follow-up is necessary to assess oncologic outcomes.

Funding: none