Why some prostate cancers may not need treatment right away

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Why some prostate cancers may not need treatment right away

Monitoring of prostate cancer might be warranted, instead of immediate surgery.

The biopsy shows cancer, so you have to act fast, right? Not necessarily, if it’s a prostate tumor.

Men increasingly have choices if their cancer is found at an early stage, as most cases in the U.S. are. They can treat it right away or monitor with periodic tests and treat later if it worsens or causes symptoms.

Now, long-term results are in from one of the few studies comparing these options in men with tumors confined to the prostate. After 20 years, death rates were roughly similar for those who had immediate surgery and those initially assigned to monitoring, and surgery had more side effects.

“Many men, when they hear the word cancer, you want to do something about it,” said one study leader, Dr. Gerald Andriole, urology chief at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. “The reality is, if you have a low-risk cancer, like the study shows, you don’t need treatment, certainly not urgently.”

It’s not all black and white, though. Early stage doesn’t necessarily mean low risk. Some results in the study lean in favor of surgery, and it does have some advantages. It also may improve survival for certain groups. Here’s what this and other studies tell us about who does and doesn’t benefit from surgery.

Read full article: Why some prostate cancers may not need treatment right away – CBS News

Read Full Article: Why some prostate cancers may not need treatment right away – CBS New

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