Once you receive the news that your loved one has prostate cancer, you may be anxious for him to start treatment as soon as possible.
When a man has a biopsy, he will need some time for the biopsy site to heal. This is good, because it gives you some time to learn about the different prostate cancer treatments.
Finding the best treatment for prostate cancer
Only a doctor can tell you what the best treatment option will be for your specific case. There are many types of treatments for prostate cancer. There are also different types of doctors who specialize in them.
For example, a urologist typically specializes in surgery for prostate cancer, while a radiologist specializes in radiation therapy. Bear in mind that the type of specialty may influence a doctor’s opinion or recommendation. You may want to meet with both types of doctors to learn what each specialty has to offer.
Try to learn as much as you can about all the prostate cancer treatment options before you visit with different specialists. This may help make your discussions more productive.
As you research, write your questions down. You can also download our free “Questions to Ask Your Doctor.”
You can start by reading about the different treatments below:
- Radical retropubic prostatectomy
- Radical perineal prostatectomy
- Laparoscopic radical prostatectomy
- Robotic-assisted laparoscopic radical prostatectomy
- Internal radiation therapy
- External radiation therapy
Learn all you can about all the treatment options to make a decision that is right for you.
A tough decision
There are many factors that may guide your decision. Some include hard facts, such as:
- The stage and grade of the cancer
- Your man’s age
- Whether he has any other serious health problems
There are emotional factors too, including:
- How your man feels about the treatment
- The anticipated recovery time
- The risk of short- and long-term side effects
While the risk of long-term urinary incontinence or impotence may seem acceptable to you if a treatment cures your loved one’s cancer, it may not be acceptable to him.
That’s why it is so important to discuss all of the pros and cons of each option together with the doctor.
Knowledge is key
The final decision is ultimately up to you and your loved one. The more you know, the better prepared you will be to make that decision.
At the end of this process you want to feel 100% comfortable with your treatment choice and your doctor. If not, get another opinion.