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This forum is for the discussion of anything to do with Prostate Cancer.
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Questions for the Surgeon

Hello, my husband who is 54 was diagnosed with prostate cancer last month. He has a Gleason score of 7 and a PSA of 4.5. He has had two different biopsys over the last six months. In both biopsys 12 samples were taken and only one sample came back cancerous. From what we understand his Cancer is in the very early stages.

His Urologist has recommended a nerve sparing surgery which we are very nervous about. His surgery is scheduled for July 30, 2015 We have been looking for any and all information about prostate cancer and surgery but everything seems very vague. Also, the side effects seem life changing. He is very scared and so am I. We have a strong relationship and have been married for 23 years. He is the love of my life and I don't want to lose him but we are worried if we are making the right decision or not. I have read that there are a lot of prostate surgeries that are unnecessary. I guess my questions are for those of you that are close to his age in a similar situation.

What specific questions would you ask the Dr/Surgeon before you have surgery?
I want to know how successful your surgery was?
How has your life changed such as incontience and sexual function since your surgery?
How long did it take for all of your functions to return?
Would you make the same choice of surgery if you had to do it all over again?

Any and all information would be greatly appreciated. I'm just looking for answers and I'm not even sure if I have asked the right questions.

Thank you,
Marie
Tampa, Florida

Re: Questions for the Surgeon

Hello Marie and welcome. Most active treatments for prostate cancer do have inherent risk attached. Before agreeing to treatment most of us on here did volumes of research as to the pro's and con's. You will find the Yana prostate survivor stories a useful utility for that purpose. The site also contains an analysis of the database stories providing statistical information relating to treatment modalities and disease progression. A bit of research will go a long way to easing your concerns.

It is always wise to make a considered informed decision prior to agreeing and undertaking active treatment. Go do some reading and pose your specific questions and answers will be forthcoming.

best wishes,
john

Re: Questions for the Surgeon

As part of your research effort you may find the following book by Bob Marckini helpful:

"You Can Beat Prostate Cancer..." Mr. Marckini devotes an entire chapter to a discussion of the advantages and disadvantages of most of the common methods of treating Pca. He devotes particular attention to surgery and proton therapy.This book is readily available, an easy read and well worth its modest price.
Regards Don O.

Re: Questions for the Surgeon

Marie,

Your concerns are well founded. I would suggest getting a second opinion on your biopsy slides @ John Hopkins. Can you tell us a little more about his biopsy report? For example, the length of the section with cancer, the amount of gleason 4 in that length. UCSF is allowing men to do Active Survelliance with small volume gleason 7 tumors with small % of gleason 4. Another suggestion is getting a mpMRI. This will help determine if there are any tumors that the TRUS biopsy missed and help you determine if AS is a reasonable option.

Fred

Re: Questions for the Surgeon

John Bonneville, am I correct you are a surgeon, which university did you graduate from and where did you practice and how long have you been a surgeon. What are your qualifications.I am new to this site, many thank keep up the good work. Cheers Harold H.

Reply to Harold

I see this is your first post on YANA Harold, so may I, and no doubt a few others as well, extend a warm welcome.

Now to the matter raised in your question. Harold, several posters on here do have health professional backgrounds. Some portray their credentials, others are more circumspect. Suffice to say my musings on here, are of a general nature only and not mean to be prescriptive. I do so, as I still have an active interest in PCa both personally and with other men in my local community.

A surgeon? Good grief perish the though!

best wishes
john

Re: Questions for the Surgeon

Hello Marie,

My advice is to seek advice from a prostate oncologist who is treatment method agnostic. My oncologist in in Southern California is adamant that seed radiation leads to better outcomes than surgery, bolstered by medical studies. Plus an oncologist may not even recommend surgery or radiation at this time. I'm not sure who's available in Florida, but it would be worth traveling to the right person. I moved to Southern California to be near the best care, but have family here also.

Kevin (12 year survivor with two recurrences)

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