Prostate Cancer Treatment

Deciding on a prostate cancer treatment with your doctor is an understandably difficult journey and series of tough decisions. First, it is important to note that prostate cancer treatment options vary according to patient’s age and overall health as well as the stage of the cancer, if it is the first appearance or a reoccurrence, and if it is confined to the prostate gland or has spread. These factors also influence the overall prognosis and probable success of treatment.  Once all of the individual’s physical and psychological needs are factored into deciding a prostate cancer treatment, there are four main types of treatment which may be offered. The National Cancer Institute deems the four standard prostate cancer treatment options as: watchful waiting, surgery, radiation and hormone therapy.

Watchful waiting is a process in which a patient’s health is carefully monitored and treatment does not begin until a change or onset of symptoms.  This gives the doctor valuable insight as to the rate of growth and stage of cancer, thereby narrowing to the best possible treatment option.  Surgery provides the removal of the cancerous cells, in hopes to slow and stop their growth. The type of surgery depends on the location of malignant cells and may remove the lymph nodes from the pelvis area, tissue surrounding the prostate, or the entire gland itself.  Radiation therapy may be used in conjunction with surgery and utilizes high does of radiation targeted at the cancerous cells in an attempt to kill them. Radiation can come from an external source via machine or internally through the use of needles and catheters.  A newer course of treatment called hormone therapy blocks or suppresses certain hormones which are used by the cancer to spread.   Although these are currently the standard prostate cancer treatment options, there are many clinical treatment trials in the works as medical technology advances.

Latest Article: American Cancer Society

The American Cancer Society was formed in 1913 by a team of 15 doctors and has grown, evolved, and helped countless people that have been diagnosed with cancer to the society we know today.  The American Cancer Society is the place that you should go to for any and all information on cancer.  They have a call center – the National Cancer Information Center - that is...

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