Publications by authors named "Paolo Alessio"

6 Publications

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Oncological outcomes of salvage radical prostatectomy for recurrent prostate cancer in the contemporary era: A multicenter retrospective study.

Urol Oncol 2021 05 10;39(5):296.e21-296.e29. Epub 2021 Jan 10.

Department of Urology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN.

Background: Salvage radical prostatectomy (sRP) historically yields poor functional outcomes and high complication rates. However, recent reports on robotic sRP show improved results. Our objectives were to evaluate sRP oncological outcomes and predictors of positive margins and biochemical recurrence (BCR).

Methods: We retrospectively collected data of sRP for recurrent prostate cancer after local nonsurgical treatment at 18 tertiary referral centers in United States, Australia and Europe, from 2000 to 2016. SM and BCR were evaluated in a univariate and multivariable analysis. Overall and cancer-specific survival were also assessed.

Results: We included 414 cases, 63.5% of them performed after radiotherapy. Before sRP the majority of patients had biopsy Gleason score (GS) ≤7 (55.5%) and imaging negative or with prostatic bed involvement only (93.3%). Final pathology showed aggressive histology in 39.7% (GS ≥9 27.6%), with 52.9% having ≥pT3 disease and 16% pN+. SM was positive in 29.7%. Five years BCR-Free, cancer-specific survival and OS were 56.7%, 97.7% and 92.1%, respectively. On multivariable analysis pathological T (pT3a odds ratio [OR] 2.939, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.469-5.879; ≥pT3b OR 2.428-95% CI 1.333-4.423) and N stage (pN1 OR 2.871, 95% CI 1.503-5.897) were independent predictors of positive margins. Pathological T stage ≥T3b (OR 2.348 95% CI 1.338-4.117) and GS (up to OR 7.183, 95% CI 1.906-27.068 for GS >8) were independent predictors for BCR. Limitations include the retrospective nature of the study and limited follow-up.

Conclusions: In a contemporary series, sRP showed promising oncological control in the medium term despite aggressive pathological features. BCR risk increased in case of locally advanced disease and higher GS. Future studies are needed to confirm our findings.
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May 2021

Implementing telemedicine for the management of benign urologic conditions: a single centre experience in Italy.

World J Urol 2021 Aug 1;39(8):3109-3115. Epub 2021 Jan 1.

Division of Urology, Department of Oncology, School of Medicine, San Luigi Hospital, University of Turin, Regione Gonzole 10, 10043, Orbassano, Turin, Italy.

Purpose: To assess the use of telemedicine with phone-call visits as a practical tool to follow-up with patients affected by urological benign diseases, whose clinic visits had been cancelled during the acute phase of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Methods: Patients were contacted via phone-call and a specific questionnaire was administered to evaluate the health status of these patients and to identify those who needed an "in-person" ambulatory visit due to the worsening of their condition. Secondarily, the patients' perception of a potential shift towards a "telemedicine" approach to the management of their condition and to indirectly evaluate their desire to return to "in-person" clinic visits.

Results: 607 were contacted by phone-call. 87.5% (531/607) of the cases showed stability of the symptoms so no clinic in-person or emergency visits were needed. 81.5% (495/607) of patients were more concerned about the risk of contagion than their urological condition. The median score for phone visit comprehensibility and ease of communication of exams was 5/5; whilst patients' perception of phone visits' usefulness was scored 4/5. 53% (322/607) of the interviewees didn't own the basic supports required to be able to perform a real telemedicine consult according to the required standards.

Conclusion: Telemedicine approach limits the number of unnecessary accesses to medical facilities and represents an important tool for the limitation of the risk of transmission of infectious diseases, such as COVID-19. However, infrastructures, health workers and patients should reach out to a computerization process to allow a wider diffusion of more advanced forms of telemedicine, such as televisit.
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August 2021

Deferring Elective Urologic Surgery During the COVID-19 Pandemic: The Patients' Perspective.

Urology 2021 01 24;147:21-26. Epub 2020 Sep 24.

Department of Urology, Careggi Hospital, University of Florence, Florence, Italy; Department of Experimental and Clinical Medicine, University of Florence, Florence, Italy.

Objectives: To explore the perspective of urological patients on the possibility to defer elective surgery due to the fear of contracting COVID-19.

Methods: All patients scheduled for elective urological procedures for malignant or benign diseases at 2 high-volume centers were administered a questionnaire, through structured telephone interviews, between April 24 and 27, 2020. The questionnaire included 3 questions: (1) In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, would you defer the planned surgical intervention? (2) If yes, when would you be willing to undergo surgery? (3) What do you consider potentially more harmful for your health: the risk of contracting COVID-19 during hospitalization or the potential consequences of delaying surgical treatment?

Results: Overall, 332 patients were included (51.5% and 48.5% in the oncology and benign groups, respectively). Of these, 47.9% patients would have deferred the planned intervention (33.3% vs 63.4%; P < .001), while the proportion of patients who would have preferred to delay surgery for more than 6 months was comparable between the groups (87% vs 80%). These answers were influenced by patient age and American Society of Anesthesiologists score (in the Oncology group) and by the underlying urological condition (in the benign group). Finally, 182 (54.8%) patients considered the risk of COVID-19 potentially more harmful than the risk of delaying surgery (37% vs 73%; P < .001). This answer was driven by patient age and the underlying disease in both groups.

Conclusions: Our findings reinforce the importance of shared decision-making before urological surgery, leveraging patients' values and expectations to refine the paradigm of evidence-based medicine during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.
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January 2021

Outcomes of Salvage Radical Prostatectomy for M0 Castration-resistant Recurrent Prostate Cancer: A Reasonable Option in the Era of New Antiandrogen Therapies?

Eur Urol Focus 2021 Jul 12;7(4):807-811. Epub 2020 May 12.

Department of Urology, San Giovanni Battista Hospital, Città della Salute e della Scienza, University of Turin, Turin, Italy.

There is little evidence regarding salvage radical prostatectomy (sRP) for M0 castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC). We reviewed oncological results and complications for 23 men with radiographically recurrent M0 CRPC undergoing sRP at six institutions. Sixteen and ten men experienced at least one and one major (Clavien >2) complication, respectively. After sRP, nine men became incontinent, including two with severe incontinence. The majority of men had aggressive extraprostatic disease (≥pT3b 56.5%; pN1 30.4%; Gleason ≥8 65.2%). Postoperatively 69.6% reached undetectable prostate-specific antigen (PSA) without androgen deprivation therapy (ADT). Seven men had postoperative PSA persistence and six had CRPC persistence. Among the others, biochemical recurrence (BCR) occurred in 68.7% and CRPC in 58.8% at a median of 11 and 31 mo from sRP, respectively. At median follow-up of 4 yr, 17.4% were disease-free, 34.4% had died from PC, and 4.3% had died from other causes. sRP for M0 CRPC is feasible although the risk of complications is significant. A minority of patients can be cured and a significant proportion experience prolonged BCR- and CRPC-free status, thus delaying the need for systemic treatments. Further studies are needed to clarify the role of sRP for M0 CRPC in the era of new antiandrogen therapies. PATIENT SUMMARY: Salvage radical prostatectomy for radiorecurrent M0 castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) is feasible, although continence outcomes are suboptimal and the risk of complications is significant. Survival is promising: some men can be cured and others experience a period without evidence of PC or CRPC. More research is needed to confirm our findings and demonstrate survival benefits.
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July 2021

Salvage Radical Prostatectomy for Recurrent Prostate Cancer: Morbidity and Functional Outcomes from a Large Multicenter Series of Open versus Robotic Approaches.

J Urol 2019 10 6;202(4):725-731. Epub 2019 Sep 6.

Netherlands Cancer Institute, Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Purpose: Salvage radical prostatectomy has historically yielded a poor functional outcome and a high complication rate. However, recent reports of robotic salvage radical prostatectomy have demonstrated improved results. In this study we assessed salvage radical prostatectomy functional outcomes and complications when comparing robotic and open approaches.

Materials And Methods: We retrospectively collected data on salvage radical prostatectomy for recurrent prostate cancer after local nonsurgical treatment at 18 tertiary referral centers from 2000 to 2016. The Clavien-Dindo classification was applied to classify complications. Complications and functional outcomes were evaluated by univariable and multivariable analysis.

Results: We included 395 salvage radical prostatectomies, of which 186 were open and 209 were robotic. Robotic salvage radical prostatectomy yielded lower blood loss and a shorter hospital stay (each p <0.0001). No significant difference emerged in the incidence of major and overall complications (10.1%, p=0.16, and 34.9%, p=0.67), including an overall low risk of rectal injury and fistula (1.58% and 2.02%, respectively). However, anastomotic stricture was more frequent for open salvage radical prostatectomy (16.57% vs 7.66%, p <0.01). Overall 24.6% of patients had had severe incontinence, defined as 3 or more pads per day, for 12 or 6 months. On multivariable analysis robotic salvage radical prostatectomy was an independent predictor of continence preservation (OR 0.411, 95% CI 0.232-0.727, p=0.022). Limitations include the retrospective nature of the study and the absence of a standardized surgical technique.

Conclusions: In this contemporary series to our knowledge salvage radical prostatectomy showed a low risk of major complications and better functional outcomes than previously reported. Robotic salvage radical prostatectomy may reduce anastomotic stricture, blood loss and hospital stay, and improve continence outcomes.
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October 2019

Complication Rate After Antibiotic Prophylaxis with Fosfomycin Versus Fluorochinolones or β-lactam Antibiotics in Patients Undergoing Prostate Biopsy: A Propensity Score-adjusted Analysis.

Eur Urol Focus 2020 03 13;6(2):370-375. Epub 2018 Jul 13.

Urology Section, Department of Urology, University of Catania, Catania, Italy; Department of Neuroscience, Reproductive Sciences and Odontostomatology, University of Naples Federico II, Naples, Italy.

Background: Transrectal ultrasound-guided prostate biopsy (TRBx) or transperineal Bx (TPBx) are considered alternative approaches for the diagnosis of prostate cancer (PCa). However, urinary tract infection (UTI) or other complications could be more frequent in the TRBx approach.

Objective: To determine the complication rate following different antimicrobial prophylaxis (AMP; fosfomycin trometamol [FT] vs ß-lactame or fluorochinolones [FQ]) in patients undergoing TRBx or TPBx.

Design, Setting, And Participants: The analyses were based on prospectively collected data of a cohort of patients who underwent TRBx or TPBx for elevated prostate-specific antigen (PSA; ≥4ng/ml) or clinical suspicion of PCa, between September 2016 and March 2017. Patients received a single dose of 3g oral FT (group A) or, alternatively, FQ or ß-lactame (group B).

Intervention: TRBx versus TPBx.

Outcome Measurements And Statistical Analysis: Adjustment variables consisted of age, PSA, biopsy technique (TPBx vs TRBx), and antibiotic prophylaxis (FT vs ß-lactame or FQ) using 1:1 propensity-score matching. Overall, 526 patients were considered, of whom 258 received FT (group A) and the other 258 received ß-lactame or FQ (group B).

Results And Limitations: Overall complications occurred in 390 (75.58%) and major complications in 67/516 (12.98%). Lower prevalence of UTIs was detected in group A (34.1%) compared with that in group B (43.4%; p=0.03), while similar rates of haematuria (54.7% vs 55.4%), haemospermia (39.5% vs 33.0%), and acute urinary retention (11.6% vs 9.3%) were detected in groups A and B. We found that group B (odds ratio [OR]: 1.54; p=0.03), I grade haematuria (OR: 6.17; p<0.01), and II grade haematuria (OR: 5.13; p<0.01) were significantly associated with increased risk of UTIs.

Conclusions: AMP with fluoroquinoles or ß-lactam antibiotics increased the rate of UTIs, when compared with FT, in patients undergoing TRBx or TPBx. The appearance of haematuria or haemospermia is associated with UTIs, suggesting the possibility of tailoring the strategy for prophylaxis in this category of patients.

Patient Summary: In this study, comparing complications after transrectal ultrasound-guided prostate biopsy versus transperineal biopsy, prophylaxis with fluoroquinoles or ß-lactam antibiotics increased the rate of urinary tract infections when compared with fosfomycin trometamol, regardless of the type of biopsy approach.
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March 2020