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It's R/P in February

william1
Posts: 35
Joined: Nov 2005

Hi to All,
I've safely returned from my second opinion at Emory University in Atlanta. I was impressed with Dr. Frey Marshall, the Head of Urology there. If his surgical expertise is as impressive as his mannerisms... then...I have complete confidence I'm in good care. Dr. Marshall answered each of my long list of questions with obvious knowledge, patience and compasion.

As I understand it, there are no absolutes regardless of the treatment option one chooses. All of the talk about curative treatments appear to be just that...a lot of talk. It's as simple as...remove it ( R/P) while it's confined to the gland (and hope cancer cells haven't escaped into the blood stream or through one of the holes from the biopsy) or attempt to destroy it with Radiation ( and hope all cancer cells are destroyed). Only future P.S.A.'s will indicate if the prayers and course of treatment was successful. As history has taught us... very few wars are won with a single battle.

The past couple of months have been like being stuck in a revolving door. The shock of recent diagnosis and the urgent attempt to educate myself in order to choose the right treatment has overwhelmed me to the point I question my sanity.

My sincere appreciation to all of you who have shared your personal experiences and responded to the many questions and concerns of others. I hope others will benefit from your collective knowledge and experience as much as I believe I have.

No...I didn't learn all there is to know about P/C or the exact choice of treatment for my particular condition from reading the post and comments on this site or from the many hours of computer research on the subject. However, I have learned something I believe to be as equally important to one's survival... to be confident in your treatment decision... recognize the comfort of prayer and support from family and survivor friends.

Thank each of you and May God Bless,
william1

nodawgs's picture
nodawgs
Posts: 118
Joined: Mar 2001

I hope you selected a facility with expertise in nerve sparing or nerve transplant radical prostatectomies, as opposed to yesteryear appproaches to an RP procedure. Also, only a few facilities can perform an RP nerve sparing or nerve transplant procedure with acceptable success rates in conserving the cavernous nerve bundle. Keep in mind that when receiving counsel from physicians associated with for-profit institutions, their first priority is to convince you to select their particular procedure and close on what is the equivalent of a rather high-dollar sale.

Although proton beam therapy has been around for highly delicate use such as eye cancer, more recent developments now lend an updated version of the technology for prostate cancer. However, it is my understanding that candidates are those whose prostate cancer was detected in the very earliest stages, is totally confined to the gland, and has a low Gleason score. The big advantage is, using 3-D, MRI mapping to drive the accelerator, it can completely destroy tumors while inflicting neglible damage to healthy, adjacent tissues. In other words, the possibility of post-op impotence, urinary problems, and other issues are minimized or non-existant. Unfortunately, there are only four such facilities in the U.S. However, M.D. Anderson-Houston has a new, 125-million dollar unit that will be operational during the first quarter of 2006.

Best of luck,

Perry aka nodawgs

rogermoore's picture
rogermoore
Posts: 265
Joined: Mar 2002

William1,

Congratulations on making your decision for treatment. I know it was difficult and one which you and your mate toiled over. Being a successful recipient (sp) of a RP I think you made a wise decision. However, you must remember that each case is different. Subsequently the results may vary in different patients.

All that being said, BEST OF LUCK! Please keep in contact and if you have any pre or post surgery questions don't hesitate to ask.

Roger

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