Understanding Your Options For Prostate Cancer Treatment

If your doctor diagnoses you with prostate cancer, you’re quite likely to feel a sense of fear and confusion caused not only from the diagnosis itself but not knowing your options. Most people have had little reason to research prostate cancer treatment until their lives are personally affected with their own or a loved one’s diagnosis and then become lost in the abundant amount of information available. You will want to make the best decision possible about how to have it treated and that means having a good understanding of available options.

Prostate Cancer Basics

The prostate is actually a male reproductive gland which is located in front of the rectum and below the bladder. Prostate cancer begins in the prostate but can spread to surrounding parts of the body, including the bones, lungs, and liver. This makes regular screenings and early detection very important.

Symptoms of Prostate Cancer

Regular screenings are key to early detection as prostate cancer often presents with no detectable symptoms in the early stages. Other symptoms include:

• Frequent Urination
• Difficulty Urinating
• Painful Urination
• Urine May Contain Blood
• Persistent Bone Pain
• Pain in the Back, Hips, or Upper Thighs
• Swelling in the Legs

Treatment Options

Due to technological limitations, those who were diagnosed with prostate cancer had very few options, the most commonly used of which was open prostatectomy which required major surgery. Today however, new advanced technologies afford patients a wide range of treatment options. Here are a few of the options your doctor might suggest:

• Hormone Treatment to Block the Production of Testosterone in Order to Slow the Cancer’s Growth Rate
• Radiation Therapy to Kill Cancer Cells
• Radioactive Seed Implants to Kill Cancer Cells
• Open Prostatectomy to Remove the Prostate
• Robotic Prostatectomy to Remove the Prostate

Advantages of Minimally Invasive Surgery

Open prostatectomy, although being one of the most successful ways to defeat prostate cancer, requires large incisions into the abdomen and the abdominal wall and requires long recovery times while newer, less invasive robotic prostatectomy procedures are seeing widespread usage and lots of benefits. The procedure is done using advanced robotic technologies including micro-surgical instruments, high-resolution cameras, and 90-degrees of articulation, fully controlled by the surgeon. Some of the advantages of robotic surgery include:

• Improved Cancer Rates
• Smaller Incision
• Fewer Infections During or After Surgery
• Little or No blood Loss
• No Transfusions
• Less Time Required for Procedure
• Less Pain
• Nerve-Sparing and Preserves Function
• Significantly Faster Recovery
• Rapid Urinary Control
• Reduced Incontinence Issues

Fortunately, with improved technologies and increased options, those facing prostate cancer treatment have many reasons for hope and confidence. With today’s technologies, treating prostate cancer today gives patients much better cure rates than ever before with greatly reduced side effects and recovery time.

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