Back in 1996, I watched my steadfast father’s quality-of-life crumble as he descended into the world of prostate cancer (PC). Treatments (castration, radiation, etc.) rendered a once proud man a shadow of his former self, which was the result of gruesome side effects. Consequently, when I was diagnosed in 2005 at the age of 55...
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Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre’s Laurence Klotz, MD, speaks with PCRI about management of low-risk prostate cancer with Active Surveillance.
What is active surveillance, and how does it compare with other methods of treating prostate cancer?
The concept of conservative management for prostate cancer is not new. In fact, in Scandinavia and England in the 70s, basically no one was treated until they had metastatic disease. And the idea was that treatment....
"If you are looking about information about Prostate cancer for yourself or someone you love, you are going to encounter the Gleason Score. OK so what is it? At it’s simplest the Gleason score is a measure of how aggressive or nonaggressive a prostate cancer tumor is.
Every year’s Conference presents recurring themes. This year’s focus was prevention, combination treatment and timeliness were emphasized. We live in an era of exploding technological progress. It is a delightful problem to have a wealth of new treatment options and diagnostic tools. However, just like buying a new car or a new smart phone, it takes a little time to learn the ropes and fully exploit the complete range and capabilities of the new technology. A short blog can’t cover everything from a three-day conference. Here are a few comments.
Why Screen for Prostate Cancer?
Screening finds earlier stage cancers, allows for simpler treatments with fewer side effects, and saves lives. For example, in 1985, prior to PSA screening, the prostate cancer five-year survival rate was 69% compared to 99% in 2006. It’s unclear whether this dramatic survival increase is entirely due to PSA screening. Other factors, such as improved therapy have also contributed.
Prior to being biopsied, you need to be aware that almost half of all men diagnosed with prostate cancer have a chronic Low-Risk type, a condition which, according to my writing partner, prostate oncologist Mark Scholz, doesn’t really deserve to be called “cancer” and can be safely monitored without immediate treatment. This reassuring knowledge helps to diffuse the inevitable fear that comes with a cancer diagnosis.