Advice for Patients with Prostate Cancer

Just been diagnosed with Prostate Cancer? Get sound advice from Edward Weber, M.D. At pctrf.org, you can find help. Prostate Cancer takes years to develop to where it can be diagnosed. Rising PSA, Biopsy or DRE? You didn’t just get prostate cancer, you have just been diagnosed with cancer. Take your time, to learn the options. Schedule appointments with specialist. Sessions with Urological Surgeons, Radiation Therapists and Medical Oncologists can help you sort through the Treatment Options. Do you choose Active Surveillance, Surgery, External Beam Radiation, Seed or Brachytherapy, Proton Therapy, Cryotherapy, Cyberknife, or some other treatment? The Prostate Cancer Treatment Research Foundation can help you with this process. On our website, we provide a simple way for you to view the results of different prostate cancer treatments across thousands of patients for as long as fifteen years. Visit our website at www.pctrf.org

Video Development – Dean Dubinsky

Video Transcript:

Prostate Cancer Treatment Research Foundation.
Increasing Knowledge – Building Hope.
Edward Weber, M.D. Medical Oncologist, Prostate Cancer Results Study Group.

You’ve been diagnosed with prostate cancer. If your diagnosis came as a result of a schedule of appropriate PSA testing, it’s very likely the disease has been found early. This comes as a surprise to most men and they are quite anxious at this point. Being told you have prostate cancer is a frighting message carrying a heavy baggage The normal urge is to plunge into a “crash course” to learn how to manage this unwelcome intrusion into your life, a crash course that you are unlikely to know how to handle objectively.

So … what to do? 

Stop, take a deep breath, step back a bit, and think carefully. It is extremely unusual that there is any need to rush to a decision. Most cancers have been sitting quietly in your prostate and growing for 10 to 15 years, with the most aggressive ones developing over 10 or so years. So … you haven’t just “gotten” prostate cancer. You just have been “diagnosed” with a cancer that you have been living with for a long time.

Likely your diagnosis has been made by a biopsy performed by a urologist, an expert in the surgical management of prostate cancer. It’s extremely important for you to know that any cancer, low grade, intermediate, or high grade can be successfully treated with surgery, augmented if need be by radiation, external beam radiation therapy, permanent radioactive seed placement, for example brachytherapy, combined if indicated by external radiation, and proton therapy. In some cases cryotherapy or short course of focused radiation with Cyberknife technology is chosen.  Active surveillance is a very important option for management of low-risk cancer. It warrants serious consideration and discussion.

Take your time and learn about the treatment options available to you. You may want to consider several of these. In most situations, all of these are reasonable options. But for some men their individual  situations makes a particular option the better choice. Nor do all options suit every man’s emotional reaction to the diagnosis or his preferences. 

So what should you do?

You do not need to become an instant expert. Instead, you need to have consultations with possibly several specialists who can describe their treatments and help you decide which treatment fits you best. In the process you may well have consultations with a urological surgeon and possibly several radiation therapists each skilled in a special type of radiation therapy. If your disease is more complex, you may want an option from medical oncologist, which is what I am.

It’s important to be informed, but you don’t need to do this alone. That’s what the specialists are there for. This is the time for deliberation, since once treated you cannot reverse the course.

After stopping, and thinking, and gaining expert guidance, then take action. Most not all of the mental fuzz of anxiety and consternation will subside. But when you have made a considered decision you will feel very comfortable. 

Then you can devote your energy to the goal of successful treatment and recovery. The outcome of therapy for this disease is generally excellent, very likely much better than you might have thought. With careful deliberation on your part and treatment by experts, your will be able to make this usual good outcome your outcome.

Prostate Cancer Treatment Research Foundation. www.pctrf.org
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