Types of Treatment & Options Available For Prostate Cancer
It may not be a subject most men like to think about, but prostate cancer is a very real threat for every Australian male, particularly from middle-age and beyond. Early detection through regular testing is the best way to combat prostate cancer, as chances of a full recovery are very good the earlier it’s diagnosed.
If you do happen to have prostate cancer, or you would like to know what kind of treatments are available for sufferers, this article will briefly cover some of the different types of treatment options available.
Prostate Cancer Doesn’t Always Mean Surgery Is Necessary
If the existence of prostate cancer is detected very early, surgery to remove a tumour may not even be necessary. When an early diagnosis alerts the doctor and patient to prostate cancer, special meds can resolve the cancer without the patient having to undergo the knife, or even endure chemotherapy.
In this instance, the cancer can often be controlled and eradicated through the use of non-invasive radiation therapy. Sometimes the treatment takes less than a week and the patient can resume normal duties on the same day as the treatment.
With radiotherapy, X-rays are used to destroy the cancer cells. Sometimes it’s used in combination with surgery or instead of surgery. This method can also reduce the size of the tumour and relieve associated pain.
Prostate Cancer Surgery
Prostate cancer surgery is known as having a prostatectomy. Generally, the entire prostate gland is removed and, if required, some of the surrounding tissue as well. When a patient undergoes a prostatectomy, he will usually spend between 3 days to a week in hospital, which is followed up by a 4 to 6 week recovery period.
The prognosis following prostate surgery is generally very good, provided the cancer was caught early enough.
However, if the cancer has spread beyond the prostate gland to other parts of the body, prostate surgery is not really a valid option any longer. Other treatments are available though, such as chemotherapy and special medications.
When prostate cancer is first discovered, and it hasn’t yet spread to other regions in the body, chemotherapy is not usually used as a treatment option. That being said, if the cancer has spread, then chemotherapy certainly comes into play; particularly if other more preferred treatments have proven to be ineffective.
Prostate Cancer Surveillance
Not all prostate cancers exhibit symptoms or cause any form of discomfort. This is especially the case when the tumour is very small and hasn’t spread beyond the prostate. Prostate cancer surveillance involves keeping a regular eye on a slow-growing tumour and having regular prostate tests to monitor the condition.
In the case where active surveillance and regular testing is the preferred treatment, it can be an option that leads to a better outcome than undergoing the knife.
Medications To Treat Prostate Cancer and Help Men Live Longer
There have been numerous drugs developed for the specific treatment of prostate cancer. Some drugs have been designed to change the hormone patterns of the patient, also known as androgen suppression therapy, thus reducing the severity of the cancer. Other drugs have been developed to help men with Stage 4 prostate cancer live longer lives.
Cancer drugs are not always the treatment of choice, but something you should discuss with your GP or urologist, to determine if medications will help in the treatment of your particular condition. Often, medications will be used in combination with other forms of prostate cancer treatment.
How To Find Treatment For Prostate Cancer Near You
Australia is fortunately one of the world leaders in the treatment of prostate cancer of every stage. Between GPs, urologists and other medical specialists, treatment options are vast.
If you suspect you might have prostate cancer or you’ve been diagnosed with it, don’t hesitate to seek the medical attention you require, as the earlier treatment begins, the better the prognosis and the outlook for a healthy future.
Simply go online and search for treatment centres in your area. As an example, search for terms like:
- Prostate cancer treatment
- Best prostate cancer treatment
- And so on…
Being tested regularly is the best defence against prostate cancer, so book in with your GP for a PSA test today.