The following are some of the potential treatment options for men with prostate cancer:
- Radiation therapy or cryotherapy
- Chemotherapy or hormone therapy
- Treatment with vaccine
- Bone directed treatment
- Surveillance or watchful waiting, known as expectant management
Although these procedures can be combined, they are typically used individually.
There are various factors to consider when choosing your cancer treatment:
- Your age and likely life expectancy
- Any serious illnesses or health conditions
- The grade and stage of the cancer
- Whether you and your doctor feel the cancer should be treated immediately
- Whether the treatment is likely to help with the symptoms or cure your cancer
- Any potential side effects, and how you feel about these
Getting a second opinion is useful for many men who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer, which is a complex disease with several potential ways of treating it. Getting the opinion of several qualified doctors may help you to make the right decision on treatment, although different doctors may also have different opinions.
Prostate cancer is treated and managed by a team of specialists and experts:
- A urologist who specializes in diseases affecting the male reproductive system, as well as the urinary system.
- An oncologist who uses hormone therapy, chemotherapy or other medication to treat cancer.
As you begin to look at your options for treating your cancer, your primary care doctor is also a useful person to consult. You can be more confident of making the best possible decision about the type of treatment by looking at all aspects of the treatment, including potential side effects and goals.
Refer to our document Health Professionals Associated With Cancer Care to find out which other professionals and experts will be on your team helping you. These can include a nurse, a physician’s assistant, a licensed practitioner, a specialist in nutrition, and perhaps a social worker.
The different types of treatment available for prostate cancer are covered in the next few sections, followed by various other subjects related to treating cancer, including:
- Factors to consider when you weigh all of your options for cancer treatment, and before making a decision.
- How the stage of the cancer can determine the treatment options available.
- Tracking PSA levels during the cancer treatment, as well as afterward.
- How to cope with any prostate cancer that is remaining after the treatment has been carried out, or any recurring cancer.