Publications by authors named "Roberto Miano"

66 Publications

Can circumcision be avoided in adult male with phimosis? Results of the PhimoStop prospective trial.

Transl Androl Urol 2021 Nov;10(11):4152-4160

Department of Surgical Sciences, Division of Urology, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy.

Background: Circumcision as surgical treatment of adult phimosis is not devoid of complications. Efficacy of alternative non-surgical options is unclear. PhimoStop is a therapeutic protocol which involves the use of appropriately shaped silicone tuboids of increasing size to obtain a non-forced dilation of the prepuce. The aim of the study was to evaluate the efficacy and durability of results of PhimoStop device for the treatment of adult male phimosis.

Methods: A prospective trial was conducted between 2018 and 2020 on 85 consecutive adult male patients affected by phimosis and with an indication for circumcision. Patients were treated with PhimoStop protocol and they were evaluated at baseline and after treatment through a subjective (patient self-reported information on various domains of his sexual function) and an objective assessment (evaluation of phimosis severity grade according to the Kikiros scale pre- and post-treatment, re-assessment of indication for circumcision post-treatment and validated questionnaires scores). Primary endpoint was to avoid the scheduled circumcision in 33% of the patients enrolled.

Results: Seventy-one patients (84%) completed the device usage phase as per study protocol. Median duration of tuboid application was 60 days. Thirty-seven patients (52.1%) had no indication for circumcision after treatment. Even considering patients lost to follow-up as failures, primary endpoint was reached in 43.5% of cases. There was a significant reduction of the grade of phimosis after treatment (P<0.001). Moreover IIEF-5 showed a statistically significant improvement after treatment (P<0.001). Thirty/37 patients who met the primary endpoint (81%) still have a successful resolution of their phimosis avoiding circumcision at a median follow-up of 24 months.

Conclusions: PhimoStop device is effective for the treatment of adult male phimosis of Kikiros grade ≤2. The results seem to be durable in most patients at a median follow-up of 24 months. Randomized clinical trials are necessary in order to confirm our results and assess cost-efficacy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.21037/tau-21-673DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8661253PMC
November 2021

T1 Bladder Cancer: Comparison of the Prognostic Impact of Two Substaging Systems on Disease Recurrence and Progression and Suggestion of a Novel Nomogram.

Front Surg 2021 23;8:704902. Epub 2021 Aug 23.

Urology Unit ICOT, Department of Medico-Surgical Sciences and Biotechnologies, Faculty of Pharmacy and Medicine, Sapienza University of Rome, Latina, Italy.

The T1 substaging of bladder cancer (BCa) potentially impacts disease progression. The objective of the study was to compare the prognostic accuracy of two substaging systems on the recurrence and progression of primary pathologic T1 (pT1) BCa and to test a nomogram based on pT1 substaging for predicting recurrence-free survival (RFS) and progression-free survival (PFS). The medical records of 204 patients affected by pT1 BCa were retrospectively reviewed. Substaging was defined according to the depth of lamina propria invasion in T1 and the extension of the lamina propria invasion to T1-microinvasive (T1) or T1-extensive (T1). Uni- and multivariable Cox regression models evaluated the independent variables correlated with recurrence and progression. The predictive accuracies of the two substaging systems were compared by Harrell's C index. Multivariate Cox regression models for the RFS and PFS were also depicted by a nomogram. The 5-year RFS was 47.5% with a significant difference between T1 and T1 ( = 0.02) and between T1 and T1 ( < 0.001). The 5-year PFS was 75.9% with a significant difference between T1 and T1 ( = 0.011) and between T1 and T1 ( < 0.001). Model T1 showed a higher predictive power than T1 for predicting RFS and PFS. In the univariate and multivariate model subcategory T1e, the diameter, location, and number of tumors were confirmed as factors influencing recurrence and progression after adjusting for the other variables. The nomogram incorporating the T1 model showed a satisfactory agreement between model predictions at 5 years and actual observations. Substaging is significantly associated with RFS and PFS for patients affected by T1 BCa and should be included in innovative prognostic nomograms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fsurg.2021.704902DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8419324PMC
August 2021

Optimal biopsy approach for detection of clinically significant prostate cancer.

Br J Radiol 2022 Mar 6;95(1131):20210413. Epub 2021 Aug 6.

Radiology Department, Cambridge University Hospitals, Cambridge, UK.

Prostate cancer (PCa) diagnostic and therapeutic work-up has evolved significantly in the last decade, with pre-biopsy multiparametric MRI now widely endorsed within international guidelines. There is potential to move away from the widespread use of systematic biopsy cores and towards an individualised risk-stratified approach. However, the evidence on the optimal biopsy approach remains heterogeneous, and the aim of this review is to highlight the most relevant features following a critical assessment of the literature. The commonest biopsy approaches are via the transperineal (TP) or transrectal (TR) routes. The former is considered more advantageous due to its negligible risk of post-procedural sepsis and reduced need for antimicrobial prophylaxis; the more recent development of local anaesthetic (LA) methods now makes this approach feasible in the clinic. Beyond this, several techniques are available, including cognitive registration, MRI-Ultrasound fusion imaging and direct MRI in-bore guided biopsy. Evidence shows that performing targeted biopsies reduces the number of cores required and can achieve acceptable rates of detection whilst helping to minimise complications and reducing pathologist workloads and costs to health-care facilities. Pre-biopsy MRI has revolutionised the diagnostic pathway for PCa, and optimising the biopsy process is now a focus. Combining MR imaging, TP biopsy and a more widespread use of LA in an outpatient setting seems a reasonable solution to balance health-care costs and benefits, however, local choices are likely to depend on the expertise and experience of clinicians and on the technology available.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1259/bjr.20210413DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8978235PMC
March 2022

Post-Operative Acute Urinary Retention After Greenlight Laser. Analysis of Risk Factors from A Multicentric Database.

Urol J 2021 Aug 1;18(6):693-698. Epub 2021 Aug 1.

Dept. of Urology, "Hesperia Hospital", Modena, Italy.

Purpose: Greenlight laser is a mini-invasive technique used to treat Benign Prostatic Obstruction (BPO). Some of the advantages of GreenLight photoselective vaporization (PVP) are shorter catheterization time and hospital stay compared to TURP. Post-operative acute urinary retention (pAUR) leads to patients' discomfort, prolonged hospital stay and increased health care costs. We analyzed risk factors for urinary retention after GreenLight laser PVP.

Materials And Methods: In a multicenter experience, we retrospectively analyzed the onset of early and late post-operative acute urinary retention in patients undergoing standard or anatomical PVP. The pre-, intra- and post-operative characteristics were compared betweene patients who started to void and the patients who developed post-operative urinary retention.

Results: The study included 434 patients suitable for the study. Post-operative acute urinary retention occurred in 39 (9%). Patients with a lower prostate volume (P < .001), an adenoma volume lower than 40 mL (P < .001), and lower lasing time (P = .013) had a higher probability to develop pAUR at the univariate analysis. The multivariate logistic regression confirmed that lower lasing time (95% CI: 0.86-0.99, OR = 0.93, P = .046) and adenoma volume (95% CI: 0.89-0.98, OR = 0.94, P = .006) are correlated to pAUR. Furthermore IPSS ≥ 19 (95% CI: 1.19- 10.75, OR = 2.27, P = .023) and treatment with 5-ARI (95% CI: 1.05-15.03, OR = 3.98, P = .042) are risk factors for pAUR.

Conclusion: In our series, post-operative acute urinary retention was related to low adenoma volume and lasing time, pre-operative IPSS ≥ 19 and 5-ARI intake. These data should be considered in deciding the best timing for urethral catheters removal.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.22037/uj.v18i.6489DOI Listing
August 2021

Introducing 3D printed models of the upper urinary tract for high-fidelity simulation of retrograde intrarenal surgery.

3D Print Med 2021 Jun 7;7(1):15. Epub 2021 Jun 7.

Urology Unit, Policlinico Tor Vergata Foundation, Viale Oxford 81, 00133, Rome, Italy.

Purpose: Training in retrograde intrarenal surgery for the treatment of renal stone disease is a challenging task due to the unique complexity of the procedure. This study introduces a series of 3D printed models of upper urinary tract and stones designed to improve the training process.

Methods: Six different models of upper urinary tract were algorithmically isolated, digitally optimized and 3D printed from real-life cases. Soft and hard stones in different sizes were produced from 3D printed moulds. The models were fitted onto a commercially available part-task trainer and tested for retrograde intrarenal surgery.

Results: Each step of the procedure was simulated with extraordinary resemblance to real-life cases. The unique anatomical intricacy of each model and type of stones allowed us to reproduce surgeries of increasing difficulty. As the case-load required to achieve proficiency in retrograde intrarenal surgery is high, benchtop simulation could be integrated in training programs to reach good outcomes and low complication rates faster. Our models match incredible anatomical resemblance with low production cost and high reusability. Validation studies and objective skills assessment during simulations would allow comparison with other available benchtop trainers and the design of stepwise training programs.

Conclusions: 3D printing is gaining a significant importance in surgical training. Our 3D printed models of the upper urinary tract might represent a risk-free training option to hasten the achievement of proficiency in endourology.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s41205-021-00105-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8182943PMC
June 2021

Development Methodology of the Novel Endoscopic Stone Treatment Step 2/A Training/Assessment Curriculum and a Roadmap on Developing Hands-on Training Curriculums in Future: An International Collaborative Work by European Association of Urology Sections.

J Endourol 2021 Sep;35(9):1419-1426

Department of Urology, University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust, Southampton, United Kingdom.

Basic simulation training in endourology was established with the endoscopic stone treatment step 1 (EST-s1), which is now recognized worldwide for training and examination. Following on from EST-s1, the endoscopic stone treatment step 2 (EST-s2) was started by the European Association of Urology (EAU) sections. We describe the methodology used in the development of EST-s2 assessment curriculum. The "full-life cycle curriculum development" template was followed for curriculum development, focusing on intermediate training of EST protocol with complex endourologic tasks. A cognitive task analysis (CTA) was run in accordance with EAU Urolithiasis guidelines. The protocol and its details underwent a first consensus by Delphi method with EAU Urolithiasis Section experts in March 2017. Once the outcome and metrics were decided, curriculum development was carried out. Purpose-built stones were developed, and simulator system requirement was defined. Preliminary testing was done in European Urology Residents Education Programme 2019 and in phase five the protocol was finalized with full tutor instruction sheet. The EST-s2/A curriculum development took 38 months and involved EAU Uro-technology and urolithiasis sections with coordination from the European School of Urology training group. Starting from the initial CTA, a 1277-word revision with preliminary task description was produced. Nine intermediate skills were identified and included in the final training protocol. The training content and session evaluations were carried out by 26 experts and 16 final year trainees, respectively. Although the experts agreed that EST-s2/A protocol was well structured (96%), covered the complex endourologic maneuvers (92%), and was useful to optimize and improve hands-on-training (HoT) sessions (92%), the overall evaluation was scored 4.25/5 by trainees. We describe the development methodology for intermediate EST curriculum, which also provides a roadmap on developing other HoT protocols in future. In this report we described the development of the novel intermediate training curriculum for EST, called EST-s2, which took 3 years of collaborative work inside the EAU. This article is aimed to strengthen the standards in curriculum development and clearly describe the background of this new EAU official endourology protocol.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1089/end.2021.0040DOI Listing
September 2021

[A comparison between 24h urine collection and overnight spot urines in evaluating the risk of stone disease].

G Ital Nefrol 2021 Feb 16;38(1). Epub 2021 Feb 16.

Dipartimento di Urologia, Università di Tor Vergata, Roma, Italia.

Despite being recommended by most guidelines, the metabolic evaluation of patients with nephrolithiasis has limited diffusion due to difficulties relating both to the access to laboratory investigations and to urine collection modalities. Consequently, in addition to the classical 24-h collection, alternative and simplified collection modes have been proposed. We report here on the comparison between metabolic evaluation carried out on 24-h double collection (Lithotest) and overnight spot urines (RF test). Fifty-four patients with stone disease were enrolled, excluding patients with infection or cystine stones. For Lithotest, we measured all analytes necessary to calculate state of saturation (ß) with calcium oxalate, brushite and uric acid, by means of Lithorisk.com. For RF, we measured calcium, magnesium, oxalate, citrate, sulphate, phosphate, pH and creatinine. The comparison was made with creatinine ratios. An estimate of ßCaOx, ßbrushite and ßAU was obtained also on RF urines by using simplified algorithms. We found highly significant correlations between all parameters, despite quite different means. There was a nice correspondence between the two sets of measurements, assessed by the Bland-Altmann test, for calcium, oxalate, citrate, sulphate, urate and pH. Overnight urine had higher saturations compared to 24-h one owing to higher concentration of the former. In conclusion, RF test on overnight urine cannot completely replace Lithotest on 24-hr urine. However, it can represent a simplified tool for either preliminary evaluation or follow-up of patients with stone disease.
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February 2021

Exploratory analysis on the usage of Pi-score algorithm over endoscopic stone treatment step 1 protocol.

Minerva Urol Nephrol 2021 10 4;73(5):662-667. Epub 2020 Aug 4.

Department of Urology, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK.

Background: The Performance Improvement score (Pi-score) has been proven to be reliable to measure performance improvement during E-BLUS hands-on training sessions. Our study is aimed to adapt and test the score to EST s1 (Endoscopic Stone Treatment step 1) protocol, in consideration of its worldwide adoption for practical training.

Methods: The Pi-score algorithm considers time measurement and number of errors from two different repetitions (first and fifth) of the same training task and compares them to the relative task goals, to produce an objective score. Data were obtained from the first edition of 'ART in Flexible Course', during four courses in Barcelona and Milan. Collected data were independently analyzed by the experts for Pi assessment. Their scores were compared for inter-rater reliability. The average scores from all tutors were then compared to the PI-score provided by our algorithm for each participant, in order to verify their statistical correlation. Kappa statistics were used for comparison analysis.

Results: Sixteen hands-on training expert tutors and 47 3-year residents in Urology were involved. Concordance found between the 16 proctors' scores was the following: Task 1=0.30 ("fair"); Task 2=0.18 ("slight"); Task 3=0.10 ("slight"); Task 4=0.20, ("slight"). Concordance between Pi-score results and proctor average scores per-participant was the following: Task 1=0.74 ("substantial"); Task 2=0.71 ("substantial"); Task 3=0.46 ("moderate"); Task 4=0.49 ("moderate").

Conclusions: Our exploratory study demonstrates that Pi-score can be effectively adapted to EST s1. Our algorithm successfully provided an objective score that equals the average performance improvement scores assigned by of a cohort of experts, in relation to a small amount of training attempts.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S2724-6051.20.03747-9DOI Listing
October 2021

SARS-CoV-2 infection serology: a useful tool to overcome lockdown?

Cell Death Discov 2020 26;6:38. Epub 2020 May 26.

Department of Experimental Medicine, University of Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy.

The outbreak of 2019 novel coronavirus disease (Covid-19) caused by SARS-CoV-2 has spread rapidly, inducing a progressive growth in infected patients number. Social isolation (lockdown) has been assessed to prevent and control virus diffusion, leading to a worldwide financial and political crisis. Currently, SARS-CoV-2 RNA detection in nasopharyngeal swab takes place by real-time PCR (RT-qPCR). However, molecular tests can give some false-negative results. In this context, serological assays can be useful to detect IgG/IgM antibodies, to assess the degree of immunization, to trace the contacts, and to support the decision to re-admit people at work. A lot of serological diagnostic kits have been proposed on the market but validation studies have not been published for many of them. The aim of our work was to compare and to evaluate different assays analytical performances (two different immunochromatographic cards, an immunofluorescence chromatographic card, and a chemiluminescence-automated immunoassay) on 43 positive samples with RT-qPCR-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection and 40 negative control subjects. Our data display excellent IgG/IgM specificities for all the immunocromatographic card tests (100% IgG and 100% IgM) and for the chemiluminescence-automated assay (100% IgG and 94% IgM); IgG/IgM sensitivities are moderately lower for all methods, probably due to the assay viral antigen's nature and/or to the detection time of nasopharyngeal swab RT-qPCR, with respect to symptoms onset. Given that sensitivities (around 94% and 84% for IgG and IgM, respectively) implicate false-negative cases and given the lack of effective vaccines or treatments, the only currently available procedure to reduce SARS-CoV-2 transmission is to identify and isolate persons who are contagious. For this reason, we would like to submit a flowchart in which serological tests, integrated with nasopharyngeal swab RT-qPCR, are included to help social and work activities implementation after the pandemic acute phase and to overcome lockdown.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41420-020-0275-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7249039PMC
May 2020

Operative profile, safety and functional outcomes after GreenLight laser prostate surgery: results from a 12 months follow-up multicenter Italian cohort analyses.

Minerva Urol Nefrol 2020 Oct 10;72(5):622-628. Epub 2020 Apr 10.

Department of Medical, Oral and Biotechnological Sciences, G. D'Annunzio University, Chieti, Italy.

Background: Over the two past decades, GreenLight laser therapy has been considered a valid alternative for the treatment of lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) associated with benign prostatic hyperplasia/benign prostatic obstruction (BPH/BPO). However, the debate on the effectiveness of laser therapy compared to conventional techniques is still open. The aim of our study is to analyze and describe the use of GreenLight laser prostate surgery in Italy, with regard to the surgical techniques performed and the surgical and functional outcomes at mid-term follow-up.

Methods: From March 2012 to July 2018, patients who underwent GreenLight laser prostate surgery for LUTS due to BPH/BPO from 19 Italian centers were included. The following parameters were evaluated in the population: age, prostate volume, prostate adenoma volume, PSA tot, Qmax at uroflowmetry (UFM), International Prostatic Symptoms Score (IPSS), previous therapy for LUTS, use of anticoagulants and antiplatelet drugs. We recorded also the kind of anesthesia, mean laser time (min), mean irradiation time (min), TURP conversion/completion rate, postoperative day of catheter removal, postoperative acute urinary retention (AUR), hospital stay, variation of hematocrit (Ht) and hemoglobin levels (Hb). Early complications were classified according to the Clavien-Dindo classification, the re-operation rate within 30 days and after 30 days, the late complications and the Patient Global Impression of Improvement were also collected. Changes over time in terms of blood loss and functional outcomes (IPSS and Qmax at the UFM at 6 and 12 months) were tested with Student's test for paired samples. We assumed P≤0.05 as level of statistical significance.

Results: Overall, 1077 were enrolled in the study, 554 (56.4%) were treated with standard vaporization and 523 (48.6%) with anatomical vaporization. Student's t-test for paired samples showed no statistically significant differences in terms of reduction of Ht preoperative vs. Ht postoperative (42.80±3.91 vs. 39.93±5.35 95% CI P=0.3) and preintervention and postintervention Hb levels (14.28±1.46 vs. 13.72 P=0.35). Compared with the preoperative Qmax (8.60±2.64), the 6- and 12-month UFM showed a significant improvement [19.56±6.29, P<0.01 and 19.99±5.92 P<0.01]. In terms of IPSS variation, compared to the baseline level (22±5.51) the 6- and 12-month follow-up confirmed a significant reduction (8.01±4.41 P<0.01 and 5.81±4.12 P<0.01 respectively). Postoperative complications were CD0, CD1, CD2, CD3, CD4 in 33.0%,35.3%, 2.9%, 0.3%, and 0.6%.

Conclusions: To the best of our knowledge, this is one of the most numerous surgical series of GreenLight laser vaporization and with the longest follow-up. This technique should be considered as a safe and effective alternative in the treatment of secondary LUTS to BPH.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S0393-2249.20.03597-3DOI Listing
October 2020

GreenLight Photoselective Vaporization of the Prostate: One Laser for Different Prostate Sizes.

J Endourol 2020 01 20;34(1):54-62. Epub 2019 Nov 20.

Department of Urology, "Hesperia Hospital," Modena, Italy.

GreenLight laser vaporization of the prostate (photoselective vaporization of the prostate [PVP]) is a safe and effective procedure for Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia. Long-term results and advantages of PVP in patients with large and symptomatic prostate are still under evaluation. In a multicenter experience, patients who underwent standard or anatomical PVP were retrospectively reviewed. Patients with follow-up >12 months were divided into two groups based on prostate volume (<100 cc ≥100 cc). Pre- and perioperative data, as well as postoperative results and complications, were recorded after 3, 6, and 12 months and then annually. One thousand and thirty-one patients were eligible, 916 of these had a prostate volume of <100 cc and 115 ≥ 100 cc. Median follow-up period was 25.0 months (interquartile range [IQR] 16.5-35.0) and 16.0 months (IQR 12.0-24.0) in ≥100 and <100 groups, respectively. No difference was found in terms of catheterization time, postoperative stay, and postoperative acute urine retention. Patients with prostate ≥100 required longer operative time (75 55 minutes), lasing time (41.7 24.9 minutes), and higher energy used but lower energy density. Patients with prostate ≥100 had a higher incidence of early (50.4% 35.7%) and late complications (21.7% 12.8%) and early urge/incontinence symptoms (40.9% 29.3%). No statistically significant differences were found for the maximum urinary flow (Qmax) and International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS) results between the two groups. The reintervention rate in ≥100 group was 3.5% 2.3% in <100. In the midterm follow-up, GreenLight PVP guarantees the same results in different prostate volume groups. Early and late complications are more frequent in large prostates.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1089/end.2019.0478DOI Listing
January 2020

Performance of Diffusion Kurtosis Imaging Versus Diffusion Tensor Imaging in Discriminating Between Benign Tissue, Low and High Gleason Grade Prostate Cancer.

Acad Radiol 2019 10 11;26(10):1328-1337. Epub 2018 Dec 11.

Department of Physics, CNR ISC, UOS Roma Sapienza, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy.

Rationale And Objectives: To investigate the performance of diffusion kurtosis imaging (DKI) and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) in discriminating benign tissue, low- and high-grade prostate adenocarcinoma (PCa).

Materials And Methods: Forty-eight patients with biopsy-proven PCa of different Gleason grade (GG), who provided written informed consent, were enrolled. All subjects underwent 3T DWI examinations by using b values 0, 500, 1000, 1500, 2000, and 2500 s/mm and six gradient directions. Mean diffusivity, fractional anisotropy (FA), apparent kurtosis (K), apparent kurtosis-derived diffusivity (D), and proxy fractional kurtosis anisotropy (KFA) maps were obtained. Regions of interest were selected in PCa, in the contralateral benign zone, and in the peritumoral area. Histogram analysis was performed by measuring mean, 10th, 25th, and 90th (p90) percentile of the whole-lesion volume. Kruskal-Wallis test with Bonferroni correction was used to assess significant differences between different regions of interest. The correlation between diffusion metrics and GG and between DKI and DTI parameters was evaluated with Pearson's test. ROC curve analysis was carried out to analyze the ability of histogram variables to differentiate low- and high-GG PCa.

Results: All metrics significantly discriminated PCa from benign and from peritumoral tissue (except for K, KFA, and FA). K showed the highest correlation with GG and the best diagnostic ability (area under the curve = 0.84) in discriminating low- from high-risk PCa.

Conclusion: Compared to DTI, DKI provides complementary and additional information about prostate cancer tissue, resulting more sensitive to PCa-derived modifications and more accurate in discriminating low- and high-risk PCa.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.acra.2018.11.015DOI Listing
October 2019

Experimental Evidence of the Antitumor, Antimetastatic and Antiangiogenic Activity of Ellagic Acid.

Nutrients 2018 Nov 14;10(11). Epub 2018 Nov 14.

Department of Systems Medicine, University of Rome Tor Vergata, 00173 Rome, Italy.

Ellagic acid (EA) is a naturally occurring polyphenolic compound endowed with strong antioxidant and anticancer properties that is present in high quantity in a variety of berries, pomegranates, and dried fruits. The antitumor activity of EA has been mostly attributed to direct antiproliferative and apoptotic effects. Moreover, EA can inhibit tumour cell migration, extra-cellular matrix invasion and angiogenesis, all processes that are crucial for tumour infiltrative behaviour and the metastatic process. In addition, EA may increase tumour sensitivity to chemotherapy and radiotherapy. The aim of this review is to summarize the in vitro and in vivo experimental evidence supporting the anticancer activity of pure EA, its metabolites, and EA-containing fruit juice or extracts in a variety of solid tumour models. The EA oral administration as supportive therapy to standard chemotherapy has been recently evaluated in small clinical studies with colorectal or prostate cancer patients. Novel formulations with improved solubility and bioavailability are expected to fully develop the therapeutic potential of EA derivatives in the near future.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/nu10111756DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6266224PMC
November 2018

Multi-institutional Evaluation of Producing and Testing a Novel 3D-Printed Laparoscopic Trainer.

Urology 2019 02 9;124:297-301. Epub 2018 Nov 9.

Department of Urology, University of California, Orange, CA. Electronic address:

Objective: To create, distribute, and evaluate the efficacy of a portable, cost-effective 3D-printed laparoscopic trainer for surgical skills development.

Methods: The UCI Trainer (UCiT) laparoscopic simulator was developed via computer-aided designs (CAD), which were used to 3D-print the UCiT. Once assembled, a tablet computer with a rear-facing camera was attached for video and optics. Four institutions were sent the UCiT CAD files with a 3D-printer and instructions for UCiT assembly. For a comparison of the UCiT to a standard trainer, peg transfer and intracorporeal knot tying skills were accessed. These tasks were scored, and participants were asked to rate their experience with the trainers. Lastly, a questionnaire was given to individuals who 3D-printed and assembled the UCiT.

Results: We recruited 25 urologists; none had any 3D-printing experience. The cost of printing each trainer was $26.50 USD. Each institution used the Apple iPad for optics. Six of eight participants assembled the UCiT in < 45 minutes, and rated assembly as somewhat easy. On objective scoring, participants performed tasks equally well on the UCiT vs the conventional trainer. On subjective scoring, the conventional trainer provided a significantly better experience vs the UCiT; however, all reported that the UCiT was useful for surgical education.

Conclusion: The UCiT is a low cost, portable training tool that is easy to assemble and use. UCiT provided a platform whereby participants performed laparoscopic tasks equal to performing the same tasks on the more expensive, nonportable standard trainer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.urology.2018.06.034DOI Listing
February 2019

Impact of food quantity and quality on the biochemical risk of renal stone formation.

Scand J Urol 2018 Jun 1;52(3):225-229. Epub 2018 Apr 1.

d Urology Unit , Manzoni Hospital , Lecco , Italy.

Objective: This study evaluated the role of body mass index (BMI) and dietary potential renal acid load (PRAL) with urinary saturation for calcium oxalate (US-CaOx), calcium phosphate (US-CaP) and uric acid (US-UA) in renal stone formers.

Materials And Methods: A retrospective analysis was conducted of laboratory data collected on 442 renal stone-forming patients. Demographic information, BMI and 24 h urinary samples were collected from patients on their regular diets. PRAL was calculated as the Load of Acid to Kidney Evaluation (LAKE) score through a short questionnaire.

Results: Urinary risk factors, but also inhibitors of calcium stone formation such as magnesium, tended to increase in relation to BMI (p = .000). Urinary pH (p = .002) and ammonium/sulfate ratio (p = .000) were negatively related to BMI. This resulted in a positive correlation between BMI and US-UA (p = .000), whereas US-CaOx and US-CaP were not influenced by BMI. LAKE score was positively correlated with US-CaOx (p = .022) and US-CaP (p = .000) as a consequence of the inverse relationship between LAKE score and citrate (p = .000). Multiple linear regression analysis identified BMI (p = .009) and male gender (p = .002) as independent predictors of US-UA, and LAKE score (p = .004) and age (p = .001) as independent predictors of US-CaP.

Conclusions: BMI, which depends on excessive intake of energy from food, is not related to an increased biochemical risk of calcium stone formation, which is more dependent on the renal acid load of the diet. In contrast, obesity is associated with an increased risk of uric acid stone formation due to insulin resistance, impaired ammoniagenesis and low urinary pH.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/21681805.2018.1453868DOI Listing
June 2018

A multiregional Italian cohort of 24-hour urine metabolic evaluation in renal stone formers.

Minerva Urol Nefrol 2018 Feb 7;70(1):87-94. Epub 2017 Sep 7.

Department of Urology, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy.

Background: Nephrolithiasis is a common condition with several studies documenting an increased prevalence over the past four decades. EAU and AUA guidelines recommend 24-hour urine metabolic evaluation in high-risk stone formers. Aim of this study is to retrospectively evaluate the first three years of experience with LithoTest® (Biohealth Italia Srl, Turin, Italy) through the analysis of demographic, clinical and biochemical data collected from a large cohort of patients with kidney stones.

Methods: We retrospectively analyzed data from the LithoCenter database, including data from outpatient consultations, between January 2007 and December 2009 from all over Italy. LithoTest® was performed through a 24-hour urine collection and included measurements of urine volume and pH, 24-hour excretion of creatinine as well as main cations and anions, including calcium, magnesium sodium potassium, ammonium, uric acid, oxalate, citrate, phosphate, inorganic sulphate and chloride. Urine state of saturation for calcium oxalate (βCaOx), calcium hydrogen phosphate or brushite (βbsh) and uric acid (βUA) were also calculated by means of the computer program LithoRisk. Brand's test for cystinuria was also carried out. Statistical analysis was performed using the S-PSS software v. 22.0.

Results: The number of patients with data available for analysis was 435, of whom 236 were male (54%) and 199 female (46%). Complete 24-hour urine measurements were available for all 435 patients. Compared to men, women had significantly lower values for creatinine, urate, oxalate, phosphate, sodium, potassium, magnesium and chloride excretion, whereas 24-hour pH and citrate excretion were higher. No significant differences were found for the other examined variables. βCaOx and βUA were significantly higher in men than women, whereas no significant difference was found for βbsh. There was a direct relationship between calcium and sodium urine excretion. Excessive sodium excretion was recorded in 191 patients (44%) and low urine volumes in 201 (46.2%). Hyperoxaluria was observed in 118 patients (27.3%), hypercalciuria in 115 (26.6%), hyperuricosuria in 153 (35.4%), hypomagnesuria in 96 (22.2%), and hypocitraturia in 134 patients (31%). Hyperexcretion of sodium, hypocitraturia and hyperoxaluria were most frequent in males. βCaOx was significantly higher in the setting of hypercalciuria, hypocitraturia, hyperoxaluria and urine pH below 5.5.

Conclusions: Our findings in a large cohort of high-risk stone-forming patients show significant differences in urinary metabolic profiles between men and women. Carrying on the collection and analysis of data by LithoTest® from 2009 to 2015 and matching urinary and dietary data could eventually improve our understanding on the metabolic profile of stone-formers in Italy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S0393-2249.17.02961-7DOI Listing
February 2018

Bilateral endoscopic surgery for renal stones: a systematic review of the literature.

Minerva Urol Nefrol 2017 Oct;69(5):432-445

Department of Urology, San Raffaele Turro, Milan, Italy.

Introduction: The aim of this study was to evaluate the current literature on single-session bilateral endoscopic surgery for renal stones, analyzing their effectiveness and safety.

Evidence Acquisition: A systematic literature review was performed to identify articles published between 1995 and July 2016 that reported data on bilateral single-session endoscopic surgery for renal stones. Articles were separated into the following categories: bilateral PCNL, bilateral FURS and bilateral PCNL with contralateral FURS. We used a narrative synthesis for the analyses of the studies.

Evidence Syntesis: Five reports of bilateral FURS were identified in the literature search. These studies included a total of 218 patients that underwent bilateral FURS for renal stones. The primary SFR ranged from 64% to 92.8%. Postoperative complications were mostly described as minor complications; one major complication (0.5%) (grade V) was reported. Thirteen reports of bilateral PCNL were identified. These case studies included a total of 729 patients undergoing bilateral PCNL for renal stones. The primary SFR ranged from 24% to 100%. In all the studies a total of 29 (4%) major complications were described: 28 of them grade III while one was grade IV. One single study of bilateral PCNL with contralateral FURS for renal stones was identified. This report included 26 patients and the primary SFR was 92.3%. Two major complications (7.7%) (Grade III) were described.

Conclusions: Bilateral single-session endoscopic procedures for bilateral renal stones are effective and safe. It should be considered a viable treatment option in carefully selected patients, performed by experienced urologists in high-volume centers. Key to success is the proper selection of patients and extending surgery on the second side only when the first side has been uneventful.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S0393-2249.17.02831-4DOI Listing
October 2017

Ellagic Acid Inhibits Bladder Cancer Invasiveness and In Vivo Tumor Growth.

Nutrients 2016 Nov 22;8(11). Epub 2016 Nov 22.

Department of Systems Medicine, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Rome 00173, Italy.

Ellagic acid (EA) is a polyphenolic compound that can be found as a naturally occurring hydrolysis product of ellagitannins in pomegranates, berries, grapes, green tea and nuts. Previous studies have reported the antitumor properties of EA mainly using in vitro models. No data are available about EA influence on bladder cancer cell invasion of the extracellular matrix triggered by vascular endothelial growth factor-A (VEGF-A), an angiogenic factor associated with disease progression and recurrence, and tumor growth in vivo. In this study, we have investigated EA activity against four different human bladder cancer cell lines (i.e., T24, UM-UC-3, 5637 and HT-1376) by in vitro proliferation tests (measuring metabolic and foci forming activity), invasion and chemotactic assays in response to VEGF-A and in vivo preclinical models in nude mice. Results indicate that EA exerts anti-proliferative effects as a single agent and enhances the antitumor activity of mitomycin C, which is commonly used for the treatment of bladder cancer. EA also inhibits tumor invasion and chemotaxis, specifically induced by VEGF-A, and reduces VEGFR-2 expression. Moreover, EA down-regulates the expression of programmed cell death ligand 1 (PD-L1), an immune checkpoint involved in immune escape. EA in vitro activity was confirmed by the results of in vivo studies showing a significant reduction of the growth rate, infiltrative behavior and tumor-associated angiogenesis of human bladder cancer xenografts. In conclusion, these results suggest that EA may have a potential role as an adjunct therapy for bladder cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/nu8110744DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5133127PMC
November 2016

The influence of environmental conditions on the incidence of renal colic in Rome.

Urologia 2016 May 14;83(2):77-82. Epub 2016 Apr 14.

Urology Unit, Department of Experimental Medicine and Surgery, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Rome - Italy.

Introduction: The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of three major environmental variables (temperature, humidity, air pressure) on the probability of onset of renal colic (RC) in a large cohort of patients in Rome.

Methods: The records of 2682 patients discharged by the Emergency Department (ED) of the University Hospital of Tor Vergata, Rome, from January 2007 to November 2009 with the main diagnosis of reno-ureteric colic associated with a proven calculus, were retrospectively evaluated. The climatic parameters (average humidity, average air pressure and daily minimum, medium and maximum temperature) were recorded in a second, independent database. RC events were grouped by weeks and months and analysed for a total period of 35 months and 153 weeks.

Results: Two thousand five hundred and fourteen patients out of 2682 had a proven urolithiasis. RC events were observed more likely in the warmer months, from the second half of June to the first half of September, compared with the colder months. Although the weekly model showed a positive correlation (R2 = 0.134) between the average increase of environmental temperature and RC incidence, the monthly model was much more convincing (R2 = 0.373). We found no statistically significant correlation between humidity and air pressure and the incidence of RC.

Conclusions: This study demonstrates that an increase in average environmental temperature is associated with a significant increase in the number of episodes of RC seen in the ED at both weekly and monthly time intervals. The average humidity and air pressure were not found to be associated with an increased incidence of RC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.5301/uro.5000170DOI Listing
May 2016

Magnetic Resonance and Ultrasound Image Fusion Supported Transperineal Prostate Biopsy Using the Ginsburg Protocol: Technique, Learning Points, and Biopsy Results.

Eur Urol 2016 08 16;70(2):332-40. Epub 2016 Mar 16.

CamPARI Clinic, Addenbrooke's Hospital and University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK; Department of Urology, Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge, UK. Electronic address:

Background: Prostate biopsy supported by transperineal image fusion has recently been developed as a new method to the improve accuracy of prostate cancer detection.

Objective: To describe the Ginsburg protocol for transperineal prostate biopsy supported by multiparametric magnetic resonance imaging (mpMRI) and transrectal ultrasound (TRUS) image fusion, provide learning points for its application, and report biopsy results. The article is supplemented by a Surgery in Motion video.

Design, Setting, And Participants: This single-centre retrospective outcome study included 534 patients from March 2012 to October 2015. A total of 107 had no previous prostate biopsy, 295 had benign TRUS-guided biopsies, and 159 were on active surveillance for low-risk cancer.

Surgical Procedure: A Likert scale reported mpMRI for suspicion of cancer from 1 (no suspicion) to 5 (cancer highly likely). Transperineal biopsies were obtained under general anaesthesia using BiopSee fusion software (Medcom, Darmstadt, Germany). All patients had systematic biopsies, two cores from each of 12 anatomic sectors. Likert 3-5 lesions were targeted with a further two cores per lesion.

Outcome Measurements And Statistical Analysis: Any cancer and Gleason score 7-10 cancer on biopsy were noted. Descriptive statistics and positive predictive values (PPVs) and negative predictive values (NPVs) were calculated.

Results And Limitations: The detection rate of Gleason score 7-10 cancer was similar across clinical groups. Likert scale 3-5 MRI lesions were reported in 378 (71%) of the patients. Cancer was detected in 249 (66%) and Gleason score 7-10 cancer was noted in 157 (42%) of these patients. PPV for detecting 7-10 cancer was 0.15 for Likert score 3, 0.43 for score 4, and 0.63 for score 5. NPV of Likert 1-2 findings was 0.87 for Gleason score 7-10 and 0.97 for Gleason score ≥4+3=7 cancer. Limitations include lack of data on complications.

Conclusions: Transperineal prostate biopsy supported by MRI/TRUS image fusion using the Ginsburg protocol yielded high detection rates of Gleason score 7-10 cancer. Because the NPV for excluding Gleason score 7-10 cancer was very high, prostate biopsies may not be needed for all men with elevated prostate-specific antigen values and nonsuspicious mpMRI.

Patient Summary: We present our technique to sample (biopsy) the prostate by the transperineal route (the area between the scrotum and the anus) to detect prostate cancer using a fusion of magnetic resonance and ultrasound images to guide the sampling.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.eururo.2016.02.064DOI Listing
August 2016

Open Versus Laparoscopic Adrenalectomy for Adrenocortical Carcinoma: A Meta-analysis of Surgical and Oncological Outcomes.

Ann Surg Oncol 2016 Apr 19;23(4):1195-202. Epub 2015 Oct 19.

Division of Urology, "San Luigi Gonzaga" Hospital University of Turin, Orbassano, Italy.

Purpose: This study was designed to determine the role of laparoscopic adrenalectomy (LA) in the surgical management of adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC).

Methods: A systematic literature review was performed on January 2, 2015 using PubMed. Article selection proceeded according to PRISMA criteria. Studies comparing open adrenalectomy (OA) to LA for ACC and including at least 10 cases per each surgical approach were included. Odds ratio (OR) was used for all binary variables, and weight mean difference (WMD) was used for the continuous parameters. Pooled estimates were calculated with the fixed-effect model, if no significant heterogeneity was identified; alternatively, the random-effect model was used when significant heterogeneity was detected. Main demographics, surgical outcomes, and oncological outcomes were analyzed.

Results: Nine studies published between 2010 and 2014 were deemed eligible and included in the analysis, all of them being retrospective case-control studies. Overall, they included 240 LA and 557 OA cases. Tumors treated with laparoscopy were significantly smaller in size (WMD -3.41 cm; confidence interval [CI] -4.91, -1.91; p < 0.001), and a higher proportion of them (80.8 %) more at a localized (I-II) stage compared with open surgery (67.7 %) (odds ratio [OR] 2.8; CI 1.8, 4.2; p < 0.001). Hospitalization time was in favor of laparoscopy, with a WMD of -2.5 days (CI -3.3, -1.7; p < 0.001). There was no difference in the overall recurrence rate between LA and OA (relative risk [RR] 1.09; CI 0.83, 1.43; p = 0.53), whereas development of peritoneal carcinomatosis was higher for LA (RR 2.39; CI 1.41, 4.04; p = 0.001). No difference could be found for time to recurrence (WMD -8.2 months; CI -18.2, 1.7; p = 0.11), as well as for cancer specific mortality (OR 0.68; CI 0.44, 1.05; p = 0.08).

Conclusions: OA should still be considered the standard surgical management of ACC. LA can offer a shorter hospital stay and possibly a faster recovery. Therefore, this minimally invasive approach can certainly play a role in this setting, but it should be only offered in carefully selected cases to avoid jeopardizing the oncological outcome.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1245/s10434-015-4900-xDOI Listing
April 2016

Simulation of RIRS in soft cadavers: a novel training model by the Cadaveric Research On Endourology Training (CRET) Study Group.

World J Urol 2016 May 30;34(5):741-6. Epub 2015 Aug 30.

Urology Department, Cottolengo Hospital, Turin, Italy.

Purpose: The aim of the current study was to evaluate the use of fresh-frozen concurrently with embalmed cadavers as initial training models for flexible ureteroscopy (fURS) in a group of urologists who were inexperienced in retrograde intrarenal surgery (RIRS).

Methods: Twelve urologists involved in a cadaveric fURS training course were enrolled into this prospective study. All the participants were inexperienced in fURS. Theoretical lectures and step-by-step tips and tricks video presentations on fURS were used to incorporate the technical background of the procedure to the hands-on-training course and to standardize the operating steps of the procedure. An 8-item survey was administered to the participants upon initiation and at the end of the course.

Results: Pre- and post-training scores were similar for each question. All the participants successfully completed the hands-on-training tasks. Mean pre-training duration [3.56 ± 2.0 min (range 1.21-7.46)] was significantly higher than mean post-training duration [1.76 ± 1.54 min (range 1.00-6.34)] (p = 0.008). At the end of the day, the trainers checked the integrity of the collecting system both by endoscopy and by fluoroscopy and could not detect any injury of the upper ureteral wall or pelvicalyceal structures. The functionality of the scopes was also checked, and no scope injury (including a reduction in the deflection capacity) was noted.

Conclusions: The fURS simulation training model using soft human cadavers has the unique advantage of perfectly mimicking the living human tissues. This similarity makes this model one of the best if not the perfect simulator for an effective endourologic training.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00345-015-1676-3DOI Listing
May 2016

Retzius-sparing robot-assisted laparoscopic radical prostatectomy: Critical appraisal of the anatomic landmarks for a complete intrafascial approach.

Clin Anat 2015 Oct 21;28(7):896-902. Epub 2015 Jul 21.

Department of Urology, Clinique Saint-Augustin, Bordeaux, France.

To provide an overview of the anatomical landmarks needed to guide a retropubic (Retzius)-sparing robot-assisted laparoscopic prostatectomy (RALP), and a step-by-step description of the surgical technique that maximizes preservation of the periprostatic neural network. The anatomy of the pelvic fossae is presented, including the recto-vesical pouch (pouch of Douglas) created by the reflections of the peritoneum. The actual technique of the trans-Douglas, intrafascial nerve-sparing robotic radical prostatectomy is described. The technique allows the prostate gland to be shelled out from under the overlying detrusor apron and dorsal vascular complex (DVC-Santorini plexus), entirely avoiding the pubovesical ligaments. There is no need to control the DVC, since the line of dissection passes beneath the plexus. Three key points to ensure enhanced nerve preservation should be respected: (1) the tips of the seminal vesicles, enclosed in a "cage" of neuronal tissue; a seminal vesicle-sparing technique is therefore advised when oncologically safe; (2) the external prostate-vesicular angle; (3) the lateral surface of the prostate gland and the apex. The principles of tension and energy-free dissection should guide all the maneuvers in order to minimize neuropathy. Using robotic technology, a complete intrafascial dissection of the prostate gland can be achieved through the Douglas space, reducing surgical trauma and providing excellent functional and oncological outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ca.22576DOI Listing
October 2015

Dietary treatment of urinary risk factors for renal stone formation. A review of CLU Working Group.

Arch Ital Urol Androl 2015 Jul 7;87(2):105-20. Epub 2015 Jul 7.

Università Federico II Napoli.

Objective: Diet interventions may reduce the risk of urinary stone formation and its recurrence, but there is no conclusive consensus in the literature regarding the effectiveness of dietary interventions and recommendations about specific diets for patients with urinary calculi. The aim of this study was to review the studies reporting the effects of different dietary interventions for the modification of urinary risk factors in patients with urinary stone disease.

Materials And Methods: A systematic search of the Pubmed database literature up to July 1, 2014 for studies on dietary treatment of urinary risk factors for urinary stone formation was conducted according to a methodology developed a priori. Studies were screened by titles and abstracts for eligibility. Data were extracted using a standardized form and the quality of evidence was assessed.

Results: Evidence from the selected studies were used to form evidence-based guideline statements. In the absence of sufficient evidence, additional statements were developed as expert opinions.

Conclusions: General measures: Each patient with nephrolithiasis should undertake appropriate evaluation according to the knowledge of the calculus composition. Regardless of the underlying cause of the stone disease, a mainstay of conservative management is the forced increase in fluid intake to achieve a daily urine output of 2 liters. HYPERCALCIURIA: Dietary calcium restriction is not recommended for stone formers with nephrolithiasis. Diets with a calcium content ≥ 1 g/day (and low protein-low sodium) could be protective against the risk of stone formation in hypercalciuric stone forming adults. Moderate dietary salt restriction is useful in limiting urinary calcium excretion and thus may be helpful for primary and secondary prevention of nephrolithiasis. A low-normal protein intake decrease calciuria and could be useful in stone prevention and preservation of bone mass. Omega-3 fatty acids and bran of different origin decreases calciuria, but their impact on the urinary stone risk profile is uncertain. Sports beverage do not affect the urinary stone risk profile. HYPEROXALURIA: A diet low in oxalate and/or a calcium intake normal to high (800-1200 mg/day for adults) reduce the urinary excretion of oxalate, conversely a diet rich in oxalates and/or a diet low in calcium increase urinary oxalate. A restriction in protein intake may reduce the urinary excretion of oxalate although a vegetarian diet may lead to an increase in urinary oxalate. Adding bran to a diet low in oxalate cancels its effect of reducing urinary oxalate. Conversely, the addition of supplements of fruit and vegetables to a mixed diet does not involve an increased excretion of oxalate in the urine. The intake of pyridoxine reduces the excretion of oxalate. HYPERURICOSURIA: In patients with renal calcium stones the decrease of the urinary excretion of uric acid after restriction of dietary protein and purine is suggested although not clearly demonstrated. HYPOCITRATURIA: The administration of alkaline-citrates salts is recommended for the medical treatment of renal stone-formers with hypocitraturia, although compliance to this treatment is limited by gastrointestinal side effects and costs. Increased intake of fruit and vegetables (excluding those with high oxalate content) increases citrate excretion and involves a significant protection against the risk of stone formation. Citrus (lemons, oranges, grapefruit, and lime) and non citrus fruits (melon) are natural sources of dietary citrate, and several studies have shown the potential of these fruits and/or their juices in raising urine citrate levels.

Children: There are enought basis to advice an adequate fluid intake also in children. Moderate dietary salt restriction and implementation of potassium intake are useful in limiting urinary calcium excretion whereas dietary calcium restriction is not recommended for children with nephrolithiasis. It seems reasonable to advice a balanced consumption of fruit and vegetables and a low consumption of chocolate and cola according to general nutritional guidelines, although no studies have assessed in pediatric stone formers the effect of fruit and vegetables supplementation on urinary citrate and the effects of chocolate and cola restriction on urinary oxalate in pediatric stone formers. Despite the low level of scientific evidence, a low-protein (< 20 g/day) low-salt (< 2 g/day) diet with high hydration (> 3 liters/day) is strongly advised in children with cystinuria. ELDERLY: In older patients dietary counseling for renal stone prevention has to consider some particular aspects of aging. A restriction of sodium intake in association with a higher intake of potassium, magnesium and citrate is advisable in order to reduce urinary risk factors for stone formation but also to prevent the loss of bone mass and the incidence of hypertension, although more hemodynamic sensitivity to sodium intake and decreased renal function of the elderly have to be considered. A diet rich in calcium (1200 mg/day) is useful to maintain skeletal wellness and to prevent kidney stones although an higher supplementation could involve an increase of risk for both the formation of kidney stones and cardiovascular diseases. A lower content of animal protein in association to an higher intake of plant products decrease the acid load and the excretion of uric acid has no particular contraindications in the elderly patients, although overall nutritional status has to be preserved.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4081/aiua.2015.2.105DOI Listing
July 2015

Correlation between penile cuff test and pressure-flow study in patients candidates for trans-urethral resection of prostate.

BMC Urol 2014 Dec 19;14:103. Epub 2014 Dec 19.

School of Specialization in Urology, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Viale Oxford, 81-00133 Rome, Italy.

Background: Aim of this study was to make a comparison between penile cuff test (PCT) and standard pressure-flow study (PFS) in the preoperative evaluation of patients candidates for trans-urethral resection of prostate (TURP) for benign prostatic obstruction (BPO).

Methods: We enrolled male patients with lower urinary tract symptoms candidates for TURP. Each of them underwent a PCT and a subsequent PFS. A statistical analysis was performed: sensitivity (SE), specificity (SP), positive predictive value (PPV), negative predictive value (NPV), likelihood ratio and ratio of corrected classified were calculated. Fisher exact test was used to evaluate relationships between PCT and maximal urine flow (Qmax): a p-value < 0.05 was considered statistically significant.

Results: We enrolled 48 consecutive patients. Overall, at PCT 31 patients were diagnosed as obstructed and 17 patients as unobstructed. At the subsequent PFS, 21 out of 31 patients diagnosed as obstructed at PCT were confirmed to be obstructed; one was diagnosed as unobstructed; the remaining 9 patients appeared as equivocal. Concerning the 17 patients unobstructed at PCT, all of them were confirmed not to be obstructed at PFS, with 10 equivocal and 7 unobstructed. The rate of correctly classified patients at PCT was 79% (95%-CI 65%-90%). About detecting obstructed patients, PCT showed a SE of 100% and a SP of 63%. The PPV was 68%, while the NPV was 100%.

Conclusions: PCT can be an efficient tool in evaluating patients candidates for TURP. In particular, it showed good reliability in ruling out BPO because of its high NPV, with a high rate of correctly classified patients overall. Further studies on a huger number of patients are needed, including post-operative follow-up as well.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1471-2490-14-103DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4289571PMC
December 2014

Robotic radical nephrectomy for renal cell carcinoma: a systematic review.

BMC Urol 2014 Sep 18;14:75. Epub 2014 Sep 18.

UOC of Urology, Department of Experimental Medicine and Surgery, University of Tor Vergata, Policlinico Casilino, Rome, Italy.

Background: Laparoscopic radical nephrectomy (LRN) is the actual gold-standard for the treatment of clinically localized renal cell carcinoma (RCC) (cT1-2 with no indications for nephron-sparing surgery). Limited evidence is currently available on the role of robotics in the field of radical nephrectomy. The aim of the current study was to provide a systematic review of the current evidence on the role of robotic radical nephrectomy (RRN) and to analyze the comparative studies between RRN and open nephrectomy (ON)/LRN.

Methods: A Medline search was performed between 2000-2013 with the terms "robotic radical nephrectomy", "robot-assisted laparoscopic nephrectomy", "radical nephrectomy". Six RRN case-series and four comparative studies between RRN and (ON)/pure or hand-assisted LRN were identified.

Results: Current literature produces a low level of evidence for RRN in the treatment of RCC, with only one prospective study available. Mean operative time (OT) ranges between 127.8-345 min, mean estimated blood loss (EBL) ranges between 100-273.6 ml, and mean hospital stay (HS) ranges between 1.2-4.3 days. The comparison between RRN and LRN showed no differences in the evaluated outcomes except for a longer OT for RRN as evidenced in two studies. Significantly higher direct costs and costs of the disposable instruments were also observed for RRN. The comparison between RRN and ON showed that ON is characterized by shorter OT but higher EBL, higher need of postoperative analgesics and longer HS.

Conclusions: No advantage of robotics over standard laparoscopy for the treatment of clinically localized RCC was evidenced. Promising preliminary results on oncologic efficacy of RRN have been published on the T3a-b disease. Fields of wider application of robotics should be researched where indications for open surgery still persist.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1471-2490-14-75DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4171399PMC
September 2014

Laparoscopic pretransplant nephrectomy with morcellation in autosomic-dominant polycystic kidney disease patients with end-stage renal disease.

Surg Endosc 2015 Jan 15;29(1):236-44. Epub 2014 Aug 15.

UOC of Urology, Department of Surgery, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Policlinico Casilino, Viale Oxford 81, 00133, Rome, Italy,

Background: Laparoscopic nephrectomy (LN) in end-stage autosomic-dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD) requires a large abdominal incision for the specimen extraction.

Objective: The objective of this study was to describe our technique of LN for end-stage ADPKD followed by morcellation (LNM) of the specimen and extraction through a minimal abdominal incision.

Methods: The medical records of 19 consecutive patients who underwent pretransplant LNM between 2008 and 2011 by a single experienced laparoscopic surgeon were analyzed. Morcellation was performed with the Gynecare Morcellex™ Tissue morcellator, Ethicon.

Results And Limitations: All cases but one were completed laparoscopically. Mean specimen weight was 1,026.8 g. Mean duration of the procedure, estimated blood loss, and hospital stay were 131.3 min, 52.1 ml, and 7.9 days, respectively. Specimens were extracted through a 12-mm trocar in 10/18 patients and through a 3-cm incision in 9/18 cases. Postoperatively, three complications were observed (Clavien grades II, I, and II). The only case of incisional hernia was observed in the converted procedure. Major limitation of the study is its retrospective design.

Conclusions: In our preliminary series and in the hands of a very experienced laparoscopist, LNM for ADPKD appears as a modern, mini-invasive, and safe technique. Specimen's extraction through a small abdominal incision reduces postoperative pain and incisional hernias and guarantees the final cosmetic result of laparoscopy. The reduced overall morbidity could reduce the period between nephrectomy and transplantation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00464-014-3663-yDOI Listing
January 2015

Could hyaluronic acid (HA) reduce Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) local side effects? Results of a pilot study.

BMC Urol 2014 Aug 13;14:64. Epub 2014 Aug 13.

Department of Experimental Medicine and Surgery, Tor Vergata University, Rome, Italy.

Background: Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) is considered the most effective treatment to reduce recurrence and progression of non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) but can induce local side effects leading to treatment discontinuation or interruption. Aim of this exploratory study is to investigate if the sequential administration of Hyaluronic acid (HA) may reduce local side effects of BCG.

Methods: 30 consecutive subjects undergoing BCG intravesical administration for high risk NMIBC were randomized to receive BCG only (Group A) or BCG and HA (Group B). A 1 to 10 Visual Analog Scale (VAS) for bladder pain, International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS) and number of micturitions per day were evaluated in the two groups before and after six weekly BCG instillations. Patients were also evaluated at 3 and 6 months by means of cystostopy and urine cytology.

Results: One out of 30 (3,3%) patients in group A dropped out from the protocol, for local side effects. Mean VAS for pain was significantly lower in group B after BCG treatment (4.2 vs. 5.8, p = 0.04). Post vs. pre treatment differences in VAS for pain, IPSS and number of daily micturitions were all significantly lower in group B. Three patients in group A and 4 in group B presented with recurrent pathology at 6 month follow up.

Conclusions: These preliminary data suggest a possible role of HA in reducing BCG local side effects and could be used to design larger randomized controlled trials, assessing safety and efficacy of sequential BCG and HA administration.

Trial Registration: NCT02207608 (ClinicalTrials.gov) 01/08/2014. Policlinico Tor Vergata Ethics Committee, resolution n 69-2011.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1471-2490-14-64DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4137267PMC
August 2014

Highlights of the 34th Annual Ralph E. Hopkins at Jackson Hole Seminars (JHS) on February 7-12, 2014, Jackson Hole, WY, USA.

Can J Urol 2014 Apr;21(2):7185-7

Denver Health Medical Center/University of Colorado Cancer Center, Denver, Colorado, USA.

The prestigious Jackson Hole Seminars (JHS) successfully gathered several world leaders in academic urology and urologists in private practice for a unique scientific experience in Wyoming, USA. Unfortunately, this year Dr. Ralph Hopkins' seat was empty but his spirit continue to be the driving force for the meeting's excellence and friendship. The JHS has pioneered the concept of a Critique Panel comprised of previous speakers that would discuss in depth the presentations of the faculty chosen by the scientific board of the JHS. The 2014 JHS featured Dr. Fernando J. Kim, the President of JHS, Dr. Robert Flanigan, the Program Chair, and the Critique Panel that included: Drs. Peter Albertsen, Arthur Burnett, Michael Coburn, Ann Gormley, and Marshal Stoller. The invited speakers were: Drs. Leonard Gomella (1st prize), Olivier Traxer (2nd prize), Jennifer Anger, Anthony Bella, Jim Hu, and Allen Morey. Some of the in depth discussions and topics are highlighted.
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April 2014
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