Per the NCCN guidelines, the treatment options for High-Risk prostate cancer are surgery, beam radiation, or a combination of beam radiation plus radioactive seeds. Hormonal therapy (with Lupron for example) is usually given along with the radiation for two to three years. But patients certainly wonder if one of these three treatment options is better than the other two. A study published recently in the October 2016 issue New England Journal of Medicine compared surgery and beam radiation prospectively in men with mostly Low-Risk prostate cancer. It showed equivalent survival rates. A prospective study for High-Risk prostate cancer, however, is unavailable. Only retrospective studies are available.
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While at Pete’s Coffee to write my bi-monthly blog I ran into another regular who occasionally hangs out at Pete’s. Vandana is a professor at Loyola University. She is an expert in the psychology of learning. While we were talking I started to bemoan my struggles to educate people about prostate cancer. One of the biggest bugaboos I face is how people overestimate their grasp of the prostate cancer situation. Once I verbalized my complaint, Vandana immediately proposed I create a basic test of prostate cancer knowledge so men could self-assess their level of knowledge. Thanks Vandana!