Prostate cancer is treatable, and many treatment options exist. If you’re diagnosed with prostate cancer, things to consider before deciding on treatment are your age, general state of health, and severity of disease.
Talking to our physicians about your treatment options will help get you on the path to recovery.
Stages Of Prostate Cancer
After diagnosing prostate cancer, our physicians determine if and where the cancer cells have spread. This will help them develop an informed opinion about the best treatment option.
Symptoms Of Prostate Cancer
During the early stages, most men will not notice any symptoms of prostate cancer. If the cancer grows and spreads outside of the prostate, some men may experience difficulty urinating, pain, and/or weight loss.
Please remember that some symptoms could also indicate other prostate conditions, such as enlarged prostate. Please make an appointment if you feel you are experiencing any of the above symptoms.
Risk Factors For Prostate Cancer
Below are some of the major risk factors for prostate cancer.
- Prostate cancer is uncommon in men younger than 40, but the risk significantly increases with age. In the U.S., the majority of all prostate cancers are found in men over the age of 65.
- African-American men have the highest risk, followed by Caucasian, Hispanic and Native American men.
- Family history of prostate cancer
- Obesity and high fat diet
While prostate cancer is not preventable, you can make healthy choices that will help decrease your risk:
- Healthy diet
- Exercise (30 minutes a day, five days a week)
- Maintain a healthy weight
Treatment Options For Prostate Cancer
After being diagnosed with prostate cancer, our physicians will work with you to determine the proper treatment plan, which meets your individual needs. Before deciding the course of action for treatment, our physicians will look at several key factors:
- Age and state of health
- The stage of your cancer
- Personal preference (often treatment results will be similar between different treatment options)
When a patient has low risk disease, is older, or not healthy enough for treatment, surveillance may be an option. This may be "active surveillance" where the intent is to treat the cancer for cure when low risk disease appears to advance to a point where treatment is necessary. "Watchful waiting" is generally used for patients that have less than a 10 year life expectancy. In this situation, the intent is to just control the disease and prevent complication of the cancer.
There are two main methods to deliver radiation:
- Externally – IMRT: uses high-energy x-ray beams to kill cancer cells
- Internally – Brachytherapy: small radioactive implants are inserted into you prostate to kill cancer cells
- Sometimes these treatment techniques are combined
This procedure involves the removal of the prostate gland, lymph nodes and surrounding tissue. This procedure can be performed via different surgical approaches which include: open (radical retropubic prostatectomy, radical perineal prostatectomy), laparoscopic, or robotic assisted laparoscopic prostatectomy. Robotic-assisted prostate surgery offers many significant benefits over traditional or “open” surgery. Benefits include shorter hospital stay, less risk of blood loss and a faster recovery. Click here to learn more about this revolutionary technology that our physicians provide.
Cryotherapy freezes prostate tissue in order to destroy cancerous cells. Click here to learn more about cryotherapy.
When prostate cancer is no longer curable or a patient cannot tolerate curative treatment, hormonal therapy may be chosen. Hormone therapy is used to prevent cancer cells from growing. The goal is to either stop your body from producing testosterone, which can stimulate cancer cell growth, or to block it from entering cancer cells.