Novel methods for mapping the cavernous nerves during radical prostatectomy

Nathaniel M. Fried, Arthur Burnett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The cavernous nerves, which course along the surface of the prostate gland, are responsible for erectile function. During radical prostatectomy, urologists are challenged in preserving these nerves and their function. Cavernous nerves are microscopic and show variable location in different patients; therefore, postoperative sexual potency rates are widely variable following radical prostatectomy. A variety of technologies, including electrical and optical nerve stimulation, dye-based optical fluorescence and microscopy, spectroscopy, ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging have all been used to study cavernous nerve anatomy and physiology, and some of these methods are also potential intraoperative methods for identifying and preserving cavernous nerves. However, all of these technologies have inherent limitations, including slow or inconsistent nerve responses, poor image resolution, shallow image depth, slow image acquisition times and/or safety concerns. New and emerging technologies, as well as multimodal approaches combining existing methods, hold promise for improved postoperative sexual outcomes and patient quality of life following radical prostatectomy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)451-460
Number of pages10
JournalNature Reviews Urology
Volume12
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 12 2015

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Prostatectomy
Technology
Fluorescence Spectrometry
Fluorescence Microscopy
Prostate
Anatomy
Coloring Agents
Quality of Life
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Safety

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology

Cite this

Novel methods for mapping the cavernous nerves during radical prostatectomy. / Fried, Nathaniel M.; Burnett, Arthur.

In: Nature Reviews Urology, Vol. 12, No. 8, 12.08.2015, p. 451-460.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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