Most Common Prostatectomy Prostate Surgery – Salvage Prostatectomy

Sometimes the first and even the second treatments for a cancer do not work and the cancer just keeps on coming. Sometimes after hormonal therapy and radiation therapy, the prostate specific antigen levels in the patient refuse to lower, and the adenocarcinoma just continues to progress. In such an instance you might be looking at the need for a salvage prostatectomy or something of that nature.

PSA should drop to 0 once treatment has been completed for a patient with prostate cancer with the intention to cure the patient; but if the patient generally maintains a level somewhere around 2.0ng/ml, the cancer is still there. If PSA wobbles between 0.5 and 2.0ng/ml, something is certainly wrong although, that is not so certain. It may not mean that the cancer has spread or that it will recur; it certainly does not imply that cure is impossible, especially if the cancer remains in the prostate gland.

Surgery and androgen-suppression hormonal therapy may be considered for patients who were first treated with radiation therapy. If the disease has already spread the patient may have to settle on hormonal therapy.

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A salvage prostatectomy is most certainly a viable option still, although the odds for success are between ten and sixty four percent.

For a fact, many experts in the field of cancer medicine think that a salvage prostatectomy is not a safe enough procedure because severe complication rates are very high – as much as ten times the risk for men who have not had it the first time. In fact, if loss of continence were to occur this second time around, it might not be treatable at all, except perhaps with non standard measures. But what’s to stop a man from desiring to move on with his life?

Considering that a man is very likely in the closing years of his life by this time, the options are clear and two fold. He can stay on palliative care for the rest of his days; or he can opt for the procedure and deal with the side effects after that, knowing full well that the side effects of salvage prostatectomy may greatly reduce his quality of life, and may not even guarantee a longer life or non recurrence of the cancer after a few years.

A salvage cryosurgery may even be a better option, most particularly in patients who fail external beam radiotherapy, especially those with Stage II cancer or less and who have PSA levels that are below 10ng/ml. It certainly has its risks, but they are notably better than what is offered by prostatectomy.

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