When is Surgery the Best Option?

 

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Originally published by ABC News

Mar 6, 2014 10:11amGTY_surgery_prostate_cancer_sk_140306_16x9_608

Surgery May Be Best for Young Men With Prostate Cancer

If you have you ever been faced with a choice as big as this, you may want to consider all of the facts before you decide. For patients, be sure to talk to your doctors about all of the risks and benefits. The best advice to help men diagnosed with prostate cancer cut through the confusion is for them talk to their doctor. This is exactly what the American Cancer Association recommends — both when it comes to screening and early detection as well as treatment.

 

Younger men who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer may do well to consider surgery over so-called “watchful waiting,” a new study shows.

The new research, published yesterday in the New England Journal of Medicine,  is unlikely to end the long-running debate in the medical community over if and when surgery to remove the prostate is needed — particularly since the men in the study were diagnosed before the sensitive prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test was widely implemented to detect prostate cancer in its early stages.

The findings are the latest to come out of a 23-year-long, ongoing study comparing radical prostatectomy versus watchful waiting in 695 men who had been diagnosed with localized prostate cancer.

Between 1989 and 1999, researchers randomly assigned these men to either receive prostatectomy or not. The study found that those younger than 65 who underwent surgery to remove their prostates had a 15.8 percent lower risk of dying from prostate cancer than patients who had not had surgery. They also had a 25.5 percent lower risk of dying from any cause, as well as a 15.8 percent lower risk of the disease having spreading to other organs.

“Our results suggest that surgery may be more beneficial to younger men,” said study author Jennifer Rider, assistant professor of epidemiology at the Harvard University School of Public Health. Rider added that the men under 65 who had their prostates removed were also less likely to need radiation or chemotherapy.

KEEP READING: http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/health/2014/03/06/surgery-may-be-best-for-young-men-with-prostate-cancer/

 

Journal: New England Journal of Medicine

Interviews:

Dr. David B. Samadi, chairman of urology at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City

Dr. Philip Kantoff, director of genitourinary oncology at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston

Dr. Otis Brawley, chief medical officer for the American Cancer Society

Dr. Lee Green, professor of family medicine at the University of Michigan

 

 

 

 

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DanielleKrolMD
Dr. Danielle Krol, a native of the Philadelphia area, spent the majority of her early life growing up in New Jersey. With over 15 years’ experience in Dance and Theatrical Arts, Dr. Krol was pursuing a career as an actress until her mother was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. For the 3 years that followed, Dr. Krol placed her life on hold and took the responsibility of Caretaker for her terminally ill mother. Her passion for medicine came about during her mother’s illness, and her determination to become a doctor came about after her passing in 2002.