SAN FRANCISCO—Researchers who compared open and robotic cystectomy for bladder cancer found no significant difference in key outcomes after a median three years of follow-up, according to study findings presented here at the annual Genitourinary Cancers Symposium.

The study, by researchers at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill led by Angela Smith, MD, included 41 patients, of whom 21 and 20 were randomized to robotic and open cystectomy, respectively. After a median of three years following surgery, patients in each treatment arm had similar overall survival (OS) and disease-specific survival (DSS), said Dr. Smith, who presented the findings. The robotic and open cystectomy cohorts had an OS rate of 65% and 81%, respectively, and DSS rate of 85% and 68%, respectively.

Seven patients in the open group (35%) and three in the robotic group (14%) experienced disease recurrence. With respect to overall complications, the investigators observed no significant differences between the groups at 30 days and at 90 or more days. Two strictures occurred in each cohort.

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After controlling for age, body mass index, and pathologic stage, cystectomy type did not predict OS or DSS, recurrences, or complications.

Although the study was not powered to evaluate survival differences between the treatment approaches, it provides the best data so far, Dr. Smith said.

The symposium is co-sponsored by the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the American Society of Radiation Oncology, and the Society of Urologic Oncology.