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Does anyone know about this therapy ?Side effects ?
Here’s the lowdown on it, high level anyway. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4080851/
Its radiation with a different type of beam. There are arguments for and against but it seems to be gaining in popularity based on the sites installing it, like Mayo Arizona. As a therapy though, radiation is nothing new.
Welcome to Connect, @speed7484. Further to the study that John provided, here’s some info about Proton Beam Therapy at Mayo Clinic http://mayocl.in/2aeaLK1 including a section with frequently asked questions http://mayocl.in/29C8mY3.
What treatments have you had so far for prostate cancer?
I have not had any treatment yet. My psa 4,7 and my score was 6. Cancer is confine inside the prostate.
So do you and your oncologist have any strategy, even “watchful waiting”, or are you evaluating therapies? Proton beam radiation has been used for a long time in cancers and other conditions where they require a very focused beam, like head and neck tumors.
I am evaluating therapies at the moment. My urology Dr.Kurtz, has made me an appointment, with an oncologist to explain to me the different treatment that are available. Proton therapy, is not available here in las vegas. Which I am most interested in. I am 69, the cancer has not spread outside the prostate. Trying to figure out which treatment offers me the best chances for a cure with less side effects. (i.e) (leakages)
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@speed7484, my urologist just told me he’s retiring next month, and I gigged him about quitting while he was at the top of his game (having done well on me). One point he established with me three years ago — he said PSA tests are of little help except in cases where the PSA runs up rapidly and unexpectedly into large numbers. PSA readings in the single digits are meaningless, he told me. So we quit using the PSA test and focused instead on other indicators of inflammation and cancer. About three years before that, he had removed excess prostate tissue, located a tumor behind it but on the lining of my bladder, removed the tumor and a dozen others that showed up on my bladder lining over the next three months, gave me 6 BCG solution treatments that have kept my bladder cancer-free for the last 5 years, and periodically checked my bladder with a cystoscope. We reached an understanding that, if cancer appeared in my prostate, we would deal it with “watchful waiting,” as mentioned by @johnwburns. I will be sad if that watchful urologist is not on call if I ever find that I need him in the future.
PSA in the single digits, jump from 3 to 7, is how they found my prostate cancer. Its true that rise and doubling time are important but it doesn’t have to be into large numbers. This I am sure of.
@predictable has raised a good point in the context of what may be a slow growing gleason 6 cancer. You have time to evaluate your choice of therapy. The rule of thumb, 9 years ago at least when I was diagnosed, is that they want you to have treatment no longer than 3 months after diagnosis. You’ll need to ask your doctor about that. The very tough thing about prostate cancer is that it is so variable. It can range from indolent to very aggressive and, it can change its nature over time. Picking a therapy can be very stressful because the doctors put the choice in the patient’s hands. Studies have been done showing just how stressful a process choosing a therapy can be. If you are treated you will very likely have some side effects, its just the nature of what and where they are working on. The most important factor in avoiding side effects is in going with the best clinician that you can find. I had a great surgeon at Duke and a very skillful radiation oncologist at Mayo AZ so I have minimal urinary side effects. I had robotic surgery. Proton beam may very well be a good option for a cancer confined to the capsule but nothing is 100% risk free so adjust your expectations accordingly. Your options for proton beam therapy if you are in Las Vegas and can’t travel much are Loma Linda University Medical Center in Southern CA or Mayo AZ. There must be some very good doctors for non-proton therapies in or near Las Vegas. Good luck.
Thank You, My doctor also told me that i have three months to make a choice, on therapy.
@speed7484, Since you know that your cancer is confined to the prostate, I assume that you have had other diagnostic tests. Which tests did you have?
I think you might find this decision aid from the US Department of Health and Human Resources useful in preparing for your appointment with your oncologist. It is a step-by-step guide that walks you through all the options for clinically localized prostate cancer (meaning the cancer is located completely inside the prostate gland) https://www.effectivehealthcare.ahrq.gov/ehc/decisionaids/prostate-cancer/index.cfm?thisPage=1
When do you meet with your oncologist?
I have had a DRE, ultrasound,and a biopsy.
You are 69, have a Gleason 6 and are being given 3 months to make a treatment decision, correct? I have no idea what your resources are or where you are being teated but you may want to get a second opinion. There are considerations such as where on the prostate was the cancer found that influence a decision to urgently treat. Obviously you just can’t ignore it, but with a Gleason 6 a month deadline may put you under artificial time pressure. Here’s something from Mayo that touches that topic.
Treatment selection can be very stressful so extra information can be very helpful. My 2 cents.
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