Prostate Cancer Treatment Advancements in Israel: Arrival of the SMART Surgery Technique

Last December, robotic prostatectomy and prostate cancer treatment expert Dr. David Samadi demonstrated six successful robotic prostate cancer treatment surgeries to a large number of urologists in a groundbreaking trip to Israel. The live televised surgeries help to broaden the horizons of the innovative and life-changing prostate surgery technique he self-coined as the SMART technique (Samadi Modified Advanced Robotic Technique). As Vice Chairman, Department of Urology, and Chief of Robotics and Minimally Invasive Surgery based at The Mount Sinai Medical Center, Samadi has said he always considers Israel to be his home. And with his surgical talent, he wishes to offer his countrymen a better quality of life with robotic prostate surgery.

What distinguishes Dr. Samadi’s robotic surgery program at Mount Sinai in comparison to other prostate cancer treatment centers worldwide is the personalized approach to prostate cancer treatment provided. Dr. Samadi’s office features an international department that takes care of all travel and medical logistics of international patients.

“My office staff is dedicated to serving the needs of the international patients, from travel to and within New York, hotels, restaurants, entertainment, family assistance, and much more,” said Dr. Samadi, who treats a steady flow of Israeli patients sometimes concurrently to build a network of support and camaraderie. “This is not to say that I run multiple operating rooms, because that goes against my medical practice beliefs,” said Samadi, who performs all surgeries from beginning to end by himself with his dedicated surgical team, most of whom have been with him for more than seven years.

When it comes to robotic surgery, volume is key and that takes time to achieve

Of utmost importance to Dr. Samadi is to deliver excellent surgical outcomes and subsequent quality of life after robotic prostate surgery. This includes what Samadi refers to as the treatment trifecta: a cancer cure rate, preservation of sexual and urinary functions, quick recovery and return to a quality of life. Samadi’s popular RoboticOncology site has been translated into seven languages, most recently, into Hebrew, to cater to the needs of the international patient. “Even before a patient comes into my office, they are well-educated on the process and know what to expect, reassured that they are in good hands with us,” he said.

Dr. Samadi credits his success to his varied and diverse experience, something that is particularly comforting to his Israeli patients. “There are just a few robots in Israel so the field is fairly new and the learning curve is particularly steep, with many urologists having performed less than 100 cases,” said Samadi, who has performed over 3,300 cases, “When it comes to robotic surgery, volume is key and that takes time to achieve — Israeli patients sometimes don’t have the time to spare when they are faced with prostate cancer.”

This experience, even with more difficult cases such as with obese men, failed radiation therapy, and salvage surgery, is what makes the trip to New York for prostate cancer surgery justifiable. “Add to that the fact that there is an experienced surgeon behind the robot, who can take over if it were to fail and you have improved surgical outcomes, which is very comforting to my Israeli patients,” said Dr. Samadi, who is also fellowship trained in open and laparoscopic surgery.

Prostate Cancer Treatment Advancements in Israel: Arrival of the SMART Surgery Technique
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