After receiving a prostate cancer diagnosis, it’s common for patients to take action immediately. Fortunately, for many prostate cancer patients, the disease is slow growing and allows for more time to make an informed treatment decision.
When discussing options with your doctor an important factor is the treatment method’s overall effectiveness in treating the disease. Additional factors to consider include:
- Duration of treatment: Some treatment options may require significant recovery times or treatment may be spread over many weeks, which can interrupt work, or family schedules, making it more difficult to follow your normal routines.
- Side effects: Common side effects for some prostate cancer treatments include urinary dysfunction, erectile dysfunction or loss of fertility. Weigh the benefits of the treatment against its potential side effects and how they may affect you in the long term.
- Existing health conditions: If you have existing health conditions like emphysema or high blood pressure, you may be ineligible for certain treatment options because your condition could be worsened due to treatment.
- Your age and expected life span: Older men with prostate cancer can sometimes experience more negative than positive effects due to treatment. A study by the University of California – Los Angeles showed that exposing older men to aggressive treatment could cause more debilitating side effects without extending their lifespans.
At Austin CyberKnife, our experienced physicians will work with you to consider which treatment may be best for your specific case. Our center treats patients with a noninvasive, outpatient treatment method called stereotactic body radiation therapy. Treatments take about 30-90 minutes and no more than five sessions are required. For more information or to speak with our radiation oncologists, contact us.
This is not intended as medical advice to replace the expertise and judgment of your health care team. It is intended to help you and your family make informed decisions, together with your doctor.