My husband was just diagnosed with prostate cancer. His gleason score is 6. The Urologist is recommending surgery because of his age (55). We are going to check out all of his options, but any words of advice would be appreciated. Thank you.
Urologists are surgeons and will nearly always favour the surgical option. It is therefore always worth getting a second opinion 1. because 6 if you have to have PC is a good score - by the way in how many cores did he have a score 2. a visit to an oncologist who will discuss non surgical options.
If you go for surgery there are different types that can be performed. The gold standard is the Robotic Laproscopic procedure performed by Ash Tewari - if you look thro this site you will find numerous references to him. The chance of being incontinent and impotent are much reduced by this procedure. There is the conventional RP which if carried out by an experienced surgeon can be successful but takes more time to recover and has a higher incidence of both impotence and incontinence.
Finally if the tumour is slow growing then you might consider the alternative therapy of diet. Come off all diary, red meats go organic for most products and drink pure organic pomegranate juice. See my comments to Bamfam and Sunblade. This is the best of all options if it works. regular psa test are important to monitor any movement.
I agree with allot of what Photon has said. Your husband is young and has low scores. I would definitely look into Robotics with Dr. Tewari. He is the best for this procedure.
I was diagnosed at 60 years old with a gleason score of 6. I live in Atlanta and went to Emory Hospital. The head of the Urology department is well known for Lapro Surgery (Dr. Fray Marshall). I had the surgery done on 12/27/06. Had the catheder for two weeks and have been fine ever since. No incontence or ED problems at all. The surgery was nothing at all.
The good thing about surgery (Lapro or Robotic) is the cancerous prostate is taken out of your body and examined. Also, biopsies are taken in the area to ensure no spreading.
I researched all procedures and decided on surgery and I am glad I did. Again, I think the Robotic's procedure is great too. Keep in mind, the right doctor is as important as right procedure. Dr. Tewari has done thousands of procedures and still does procedures today. My doctor (Dr. Marshall) has performed over 3,000 procedures and still does 4 every week. If you have to travel to a good doctor....do it.
Please remember, there is life after prostate cancer. Your husband will do just fine. My prayers are with you. Keep us posted on your progress.
Thanks so much for your advice. We are getting a second opinion on Monday at Evanston Northwestern Healthcare near Chicago. The Urologist there is one of the pioneers of the robotics procedure in IL. My husband is leaning toward the robotics surgery. His brother also had prostate cancer before age 60, so with the hereditary factor, we feel better about the surgical option. I myself am a 5 yr. survivor of uterine cancer, and know how relieved I felt once the cancer was removed. I appreciate all of your comments, it is a huge help. Thank you.
First of all, be assured it is not the end of the world. I know the shock you and your husband have suffered, but you will find many "survivors" on this site. There are a lot of us living completely normal lives following the same shock you are suffering.
How very fortunate you have found this site. We have all gone through the same thing you and your husband are now going though. The same decisions you will have to make we have made. So far the advice you have received has been the same I would have given. I was 58 when diagnosed and am now a 6 yr survivor with no continence or ED issues at all. The surgeon I selected was Dr. Joseph Smith at Vanderbilt Clinic in Nashville, TN. I cannot say enough nice things about the surgeons skill or the care offered at the clinic. Following conventional RP (Robotics was new at the time) I spent two nights in the hospital and then rode 5 hours home for recovery. There was very little pain associated with the surgery and I was back to my management position in less than a month.
I elected to have the surgery versus the seed implant because 1. I wanted to be rid of the diseased organ and 2. I knew that if I elected the seed implant option, and the cancer recurred, surgery would not be an option.
Good luck with your decision and keep us posted on your decision. Feel free to have your husband e-mail me with any questions he might feel too personal to post.
Roger, thanks so much. I was in the CSN chat room last night, and newboobs referred me to you, so I e-mailed you without paying attention to the fact that you already responded to my questions! Thanks so much, I may have more questions after the consultation on Monday.
I love the responses and support everyone has given you. The whole idea is to be positive through the whole experience. Now, there are more and more doctors that perform the Robotic and LRP procedure. It is the best thing to come along especially when a younger man gets diagnosed. Since they are more active, need to get back to work, and support their family. I was 46 when I was diagnosed last April. I had an LRP with Dr Krongrad, Miami FL last June, and as the others stated "my doctor is one of the best." And he is. The main thing right now is getting the cancer out. Once that's done the incontinence and impotence issues can be dealt with if they persist. What I am getting at is some of the gentlemen said they had their surgery and they have had no incontinence or impotence problems. Ant hey are very fortunate to make it sound like everyhting is a walk in the park. For them it was. But, it is important that know that each person who is diagnosed is an individual. With that being said throw statistics out the window, I had no family history, didn't smoke, healthy eater, great shape, and not overweight. Statistics told me the chances of me getting prostate cancer were 1 out of 10 maybe. Well, I got it and a year ago like I said had nerve sparing surgery, it went great, recovery great, however, I have been incontinent for the past year. Why because I am an individual and for all the great success stories you hear, there are many like mine. But, that's okay because there are after surgery options. For instance, after six more months if my incontinence hasn't improved, my doctor will be giving me collagen injections. I am extremely positive that sooon I will be cured. Life is good, my support has been great, I have no cancer, thank God. Just wanted to add more perspective and more reality to a difficult situation. So after your husband has the cancer out and if the incontinence ansd impotence issues persist. Remember , my email and know with love and support all will still be fine.
Mary -- you're getting some good responses here. Had RP two weeks ago today with negative margines and no spread!! Thank God!!
You need to investigate all of the differnt types of treatment. Also -- get a 2nd and 3rd opinion. Don't be afraid to travel to see a real specialist. Although there are no hard numbers - for an RP - the doc should have done at least 1,000; for robotics - 100 or so. Docs at cancer center will have done more; docs at local or community hospitals less. If you select radiation -- ask how many guys like your husband they have radiated; how old is the equipmemt; their success rate, etc.
Good luck -- I had Gleason 6 also - PSA 3.7 - 2 of 12 cores postive.
I have posted several times, live in Texas and went to see Dr Tewari in NY for Robotic. Had surgery last July 2006, PSA 4 Gleason 6. 52 years old. Post surgery as perevious post stated I have never since the catheter removed had leakage problems. Had two blood test .03 on the first one and .00 on the second. If you need further info email me. Best of luck, most important decision is removal then the Doctor. Choose wisely and do your research!
On my wife side, she stayed with me until the day after surgery and then enjoyed sight seeing in NY for the next week or so. She got a vacation and I became Cancer free, I hope.