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How long is it safe to wait before surgery?

Posts: 8
Joined: Jan 2012


My brother was dignosed with Gleason 7 (3+4) cancer in mid December 2019. His biopsy showed that only one core out of 16 cores (8 samples) had cancer. That core had cancer in 20% of it. Gleason 4 was seen in less than 5% of it. His PSA was 3.2.

He is going to have a robotic prostatectomy. He is going through the public system here in Australia.  However he hasn't received a confirmed date for surgery so far. He had an appointment with the surgeon on the 20th. January 2020. Surgeon advised that he will be operated on within the next 3 months. We were wondering whether it is safe to stay for that period of time before having surgery. Potentially he could wait up to 4+ months since diagnosis.

Thanks to all for this fantastic forum. It has been very beneficial hearing from those who have been battling Prostate Cancer.

Georges Calvez
Posts: 481
Joined: Sep 2018

Hi there,

I would not worry about a few months delay with that kind of pathology, your brother has plenty of time in hand.
Prostate cancer in general, and this certainly includes your brother's case, is a slow moving animal, it is not like some cancers which go from diagnosis to death in six months flat.

Best wishes,


Posts: 8
Joined: Jan 2012

Thanks for your reply. 

Posts: 621
Joined: Jun 2015


I agree with Georges, he should be fine waiting a few months.  On the Gleason, was he a 3+4, 4+3, 4+4? There should be two numbers, a 3+4 would be less agressive than a 4+4.

Dave 3+4

Posts: 8
Joined: Jan 2012


He is 3+4

Posts: 4
Joined: Dec 2020

There is no need to panic. Given your brother's numbers, he may even be a good candidate for active surveillance. I've heard many stories where people stay on active surveillance for over a decade without any form of treatment. You have plenty of time.

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