Feb 26, 2011 - 12:00 pm
I have Kaiser Insurance and have questions regarding my prostate cancer:
I am 61 and my biopsy taken last month showed a Gleason 6 (3+3) malignancy involving the right base, right mid and right apex. In addition, there was focus of atypia in the left base. The foci of malignancy seen by this biopsy were small volume, less than 10% in size.
Biopsy taken three years ago showed a Gleason 5 (3+2) malignancy involving only the right base lateral (2 mm in size). The good news...I have a very slow growing cancer. My PSA taken every three months for the last year fluctuates between a 3.35 and a 5.15.
My dilemma is that my wife and I are selling most everything (home, cars, etc.) in Portland, Oregon and moving to Ecuador in April of this year. We are retiring and have already purchase a home there. This will be our permanent residence and I will probably be giving up my Kaiser insurance sometime within the next six months depending on who performs my surgery?
Which surgeons can you recommend within the Kaiser network, preferable in Oregon or Washington with at least 300 da Vinci prostatectomies? I am willing to travel most anywhere that I can find a Kaiser surgeon which meets these minimum standards.
Which surgeons should I avoid within the network?
I had a one hour consultation this week with Dr. Michael Lipke (Kaiser
I also had a one hour consultation this week with Dr. Thomas Ahlering (University of California, Irvine) He is outside of Kaiser and has performed approximately 1000 de Vinci prostatectomies, averaging about 140 per year. My research shows that he is probably in the top 5 de Vinci robotic-assisted prostatectomy surgeons in the world. I was very impressed with him and his background. My out of pocket expense would be about $25K if I jumped ship and went with him.
I need to make a decision within the next week and would appreciate your feedback.