Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men worldwide. The mainstay of treatment for early-stage prostate cancer is surgery. Successful surgery requires the complete removal of the prostate and any surrounding areas to which the cancer has spread. At the same time, delicate neighboring structures that control continence and erectile function must not be disturbed. This operation is most commonly performed with a surgical robot that carries out the surgeon’s actions with precision. Despite this, it remains a technically challenging operation that relies on the surgeon’s ability to visually discern structures of similar appearance. Fluorescence-guided surgery aims to highlight these key structures such that they stand out to the operating surgeon. Here the authors discuss the current applications of fluorescence-guided surgery in prostate surgery and conclude that it can be a helpful aid to surgery and has the exciting potential to be used to identify cancer cells themselves.

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