Prostate cancer has become the leading type of cancer among adult males in America. In fact, one in every six men in America will develop prostate cancer in their lifetime. However, Bay Medical's team of caring professionals offer several innovative treatment options for patients diagnosed with prostate cancer.
Often men with early stage prostate cancer do not have any symptoms. However some symptoms may indicate prostate cancer including the following:
- A need to urinate frequently, especially at night
- Difficulty starting urination or holding back urine
- Inability to urinate
- Weak or interrupted flow of urine
- Painful or burning urination
- Painful ejaculation
- Blood in urine or semen
- Frequent pain or stiffness in the lower back, hips, or upper thighs
It is necessary that you seek medical attention from a physician if you have any of these symptoms. Your doctor may suggest some additional testing, including a PSA blood test, a digital rectal exam, or an Endorectal Coil MRI. The Endorectal Coil MRI is a diagnostic tool that helps your physician determine which treatment option may be best for you.
Surgical Treatment Options
Da Vinci Robotic Surgical System
The most recent addition to these options is the da Vinci Robotic Surgical System. The da Vinci system gives the physician more precision, improved dexterity, and creates a better field of vision. The surgery is performed through five openings, no larger than 1 to 2 centimeters in diameter. Some of the benefits of the da Vinci system are:
- Shorter hospital stay
- Less pain
- Less risk of infection
- Less blood loss and transfusion
- Less scarring
- Faster recovery
- Quicker return to normal activities
Bay Medical also offers traditional surgical methods including perineal radical prostatectomy and laparotomy.
Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy uses the Eclipse Treatment Planning System and Varian Medical System's linear accelerator with the Millennium multi-leaf collimator system. Radiation Oncologists use computer-generated images to focus an X-ray beam closely around the tumor, without harming the surrounding healthy tissue. This procedure allows physicians to be more precise during radiation therapy than ever before. The precision of this advanced system helps minimize side effects and maximizes the potency of each regimen.
SonArray, which is a patient positioning system, uses three-dimensional ultrasound images and optical guidelines to ensure that the patient is in the correct position before receiving radiation treatment. SonArray assists in pin-pointing the position of the tumor in order to adjust the correct amount of radiation therapy administered to the patient.
Brachytherapy uses radioactive seeds, about the size of a grain of rice, that are surgically placed directly into the prostate gland. These seeds deliver an exact dose of radiation which fights the cancer without harming the surrounding healthy tissue. Brachytherapy is most often used during the first stages of prostate cancer. The side effects associated with this form of treatment are rare. However problems with the bladder and bowels could occur, as well as impotence.
Deciding a Treatment
It may be difficult to decide which treatment option is best for you. There are several personal factors to consider including age, overall health, goals for treatment, as well as feelings toward possible side effects. Some of the factors you should discuss with your physician are your blood PSA level, the cancer's stage, and the Gleason score. It may be helpful to seek a second opinion from a specialist.
Here are some questions that you should ask your doctor:
- What are the expected benefits of each kind of treatment?
- What are the risks and possible side effects of each treatment?
- How will treatment affect my sex life?
- Will I need to change my normal activities? For how long?
For more information, please call the Bay Medical public relations office at (850) 747-6542.