2023 Annual Report



Physician Spotlight

Physician Spotlight

Current alternative standard of care treatments can have a 10% re-treatment rate

Technology drastically improves patient outcomes HoLEP, holmium laser enucleation of the prostate, is a minimally invasive technique that uses mechanical and laser energy to separate the blocking prostate tissue from the prostate capsule to maximally unblock urine flow. Using this surgical technique drastically impacts patient care as it gives surgeons more treatment options for individuals that have complicated medical conditions, have very large prostates, are on blood thinners or have had previous treatments that may complicate their care. For the patients, the benefits are plentiful; including lower rates of complications during surgery, a more comfortable recovery, and a shorter length of stay in hospital. Today, many men undergoing alternative standards of care within Alberta spend at minimum one night

within 10 years, but with the HoLEP procedure, less than 1% of patients need retreatment within 18 years.

Physician Spotlight

and many times greater than one night in hospital post operation. As the HoLEP program ramps up Dr. Assmus and his team’s goal is that 75% of patients will go home the same day as their procedure. For clinicians like Dr. Assmus who are interested in novel ideas and innovating patient care, the ability to practice at their full scope of talent, offer mentorship and have access to research resources is critical in deciding where they will work. With donor support, the ability to accelerate ideas into action is vital to recruit and retain the best in their field right here in Calgary.

Building new surgical options Donor support brings new options for prostate surgery

When Dr. Mark Assmus was looking for his next opportunity, the urology program at Rockyview General Hospital was a standout. Calgary’s reputation for having a strong team with like-minded individuals striving to innovate and influence urological care across the country aligned with what Dr. Assmus hoped to contribute to the field. Having trained in Edmonton, Indianapolis and Chicago, Dr. Assmus gained a variety of experiences in new surgical techniques, clinical innovations,

of BPH and this rate continues to rise impacting 80% of men over the age of 70. In severe cases, BPH can lead to damage of the bladder and kidneys and in extreme cases may result in renal failure. In many cases, it can greatly impact overall quality of life and lead to major discomfort. With donor funding, Dr. Assmus has established a HoLEP treatment program in Calgary to help modernize prostate care throughout Alberta and ensure that the care we deliver here aligns with international best practices.

and research collaborations with leaders in his field. One surgical technique Dr. Assmus has brought back to Alberta is called holmium laser enucleation of the prostate, or HoLEP. Enucleation is one of the only interventions for any size prostate gland and can be used to treat men with lower urinary tract symptoms from benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) – commonly known as an enlarged prostate. This condition is very common as men age. It is estimated that one in five men over the age of 30 years will experience symptoms

“This program simply could not be initiated in Calgary without donor support. Although the program will improve health care costs significantly in the years to come by decreasing length of post-operative hospital stays, reducing re- treatment rates and having a lower complication rate than the current offered treatments, there is a large up-front cost to obtain the

novel surgical technology required to perform HoLEP. The donor support is what can allow a subspecialist like myself to bring a new surgical technique from outside of Canada to our Calgary doorsteps. This program can immediately improve patient care locally, provide a center to teach other Canadian urologists this technique –

further improving

urologic care across the province, and establish our urologic team as a key center for collaborative benign prostate research

for years to come.” – Dr. Mark Assmus

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