Wall Street investors are taking another bite out of Intuitive Surgical (NSDQ:ISRG) today, sending its share price down nearly 8% on a study showing that prostate surgery is un-necessary for many men.
ISRG shares dropped fast on Wall Street yesterday afternoon, fueled by the study and soft prostatectomy procedure volumes.
Despite 26% sales growth and 32% profit growth, the stock had lost 5.7% by the end of the company’s conference call, trading after-hours at $513.40 as of about 5:25 p.m. yesterday.
Shares were down another 7.7% to $502.54 as of about 1:40 p.m. today.
Strategy vice president Aleks Cukic attributed declines in prostatectomy procedures to a growing emphasis on "watchful waiting" as an alternative to surgery or other active treatment options for treating prostate cancer.
Results from the 731-patient Pivot trial, reported yesterday in the New England Journal of Medicine, showed that most patients diagnosed with early-stage prostate cancer will live just as long if they simply watch their cancers rather than have them surgically removed. Men with higher-risk forms of the disease could still benefit slightly from surgery according to the study.
Seven percent of the study’s subjects died from prostate cancer, roughly equivalent to the number who died from surgery.