For most men, prostate cancer diagnosis reveals the cancerous cells when they are still in their early stages, before they have spread beyond the prostate glands. This presents a number of options that they can choose from. And while there is no single treatment that is known to universally treat prostate cancer, having knowledge of the number of treatment options will help you make a choice together with your physician. Learn about some of the treatment options available for this type of cancer.
1. Monitoring the cancer
Also referred to as observation or active surveillance, monitoring of prostate cancer happens to most patients, as at times this cancer might not need immediate treatment. The process is recommended for patients who have been diagnosed with benign prostate tumours, and in the considered opinion of the physician, the tumours might not spread outside the prostate glands. It is also recommended for patients who might develop some medical disorders due to other medical conditions that might be aggravated as a result of aggressive cancer treatment procedures. It is done by examining the tumours through blood tests, biopsies and rectal examinations.
For tumours that are rapidly spreading, some form of treatment will be prescribed. This will include radiation therapy. High-powered radiation is used to kill the cancerous cells and prevent them from spreading. It can be done through external beam radiation, where a device with high-powered radiation beams will be pointed to the cancerous cells, or brachytherapy where small radioactive cells are inserted in the prostate tissue to release radiation that will destroy the cancerous cells.
Prostate cancer surgery will involve the removal of the prostate and the surrounding tissues. It can be performed in a number of ways, and your physician should be able to advise you on the best surgical operation.
4. Hormone therapy
The prostate cancer cells can only spread in the presence of the hormone testosterone. Through therapy, this hormone secretion can be hampered, which reduces the spread of the cancerous cells by shrinking and slowing their growth. It may involve drugs that will prevent the testicles from producing the hormone or curtail the hormone spread to the cancerous cells. If need be, the testicles can be surgically removed to completely stop testosterone production.
It is advisable to decide on the best method of treatment based on the stage of cancer and directions from your physician. There is no single best option; therefore carefully evaluating the choices you have will be helpful.