Early Stage Prostate Cancer


EARLY STAGE PROSTATE CANCER Early stage prostate cancer refers to cancer that is still confined to the prostate. It is also called localized prostate cancer. If you have been diagnosed with early stage prostate cancer you will be able to chose which kind of treatment is best for you. And while it is good to have choices, this may not be an easy decision to make. Each treatment option available for men with early stage prostate cancer has benefits and risks, each with side effects to consider. Following your biopsy and diagnosis, you will begin to gather information and learn about your disease and choices for treatment. Most prostate cancer is slow growing and may never cause any problems or symptoms.


• What is my Gleason Score, PSA Level, and tumor stage? • Do I have low risk, intermediate risk, or high risk prostate cancer? • Am I a candidate for genomic testing or my prostate biopsy?

Understanding Early Stage Prostate Cancer Early stage or localized prostate cancer refers to cancer that is still confined to the prostate. Early stage prostate cancer may be easier to cure and treatment is done with the aim to cure the cancer. • Stage I or Stage T1 means the cancer is small, may be too small to feel by the doctor, and only in the prostate • Stage II or Stage T2 means the cancer is larger, only in the prostate, and is large enough to be felt by the doctor Other factors will help your doctor have a better picture of your cancer and make the best treatment recommendation for you. This information determines your risk group: low, medium/intermediate, or high risk. It is believed that in more than half of men newly diagnosed with low-risk prostate cancer, the cancer will not spread to other parts of the body. Make sure you know your numbers for the following: • PSA Level • Digital Rectal Exam (DRE) • Gleason Score/Cancer Grade • Stage Genomic Testing There are several new, genomic tests that go beyond the standard risk assessment done with the PSA Gleason Score and DRE. These tests may be helpful if you have low risk prostate cancer because, you might be a good candidate for Active Surveillance. If you have high risk prostate cancer, you will most likely have a more aggressive course of treatment because you are at higher risk for the disease to spread throughout your body. Genomic testing looks at the genetic markers of the cancer cells, to tell us how the cancer may behave. This allows the physician to provide a more personalized risk assessment when suggesting treatment options. Talk to your doctor about testing with Oncotype Dx and Prolaris before making a treatment decision.

Before making a treatment decision, consider a second opinion.



Treatment Options for Early Stage Prostate Cancer If you have been diagnosed with early stage prostate cancer it is important to research your treatment options to make the right decision for you.

Some prostate cancer treatment options may impact your sexual function so it is important to be open and honest with your partner. Ask your doctor questions and try to talk to other men who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer. The most common treatment options for early stage prostate cancer include: • Active surveillance – close monitoring of the status of your prostate cancer through regular office visits and repeat medical tests, such as the PSA and prostate biopsy. • Surgery – a radical prostatectomy is the removal of the entire prostate by a surgeon. • Radiation therapy – the use of radiation to destroy the cancer cells in the prostate while leaving the prostate in the body.

Before making a treatment decision, learn more about possible side effects at zerocancer.org/ learn .

Other treatment options for early stage prostate cancer include: • Cryotherapy – freezing of the tumor to destroy the cancer cells.

• HIFU (high intensity focused ultrasound) – uses heat to kill the prostate cancer cells. Although HIFU technology has existed for some time, it only received FDA approval for the treatment of prostate cancer in the U.S. in 2015. The treatments for early stage prostate cancer can cause significant, life impacting side effects.

The most common side effects are erectile dysfunction (loss of erections) and urinary incontinence (leaking urine). It is important to talk with your doctor to understand potential side effects of each treatment option available to you and how these side effects can be addressed. Your treatment options will depend on many factors, most importantly the characteristics of your cancer,

including stage, grade, and risk category. Other factors that are unique to you include: • Other health problems, such as heart disease, diabetes, or other chronic conditions • Previous prostate surgery • Age • Your personal preference

Before making treatment decisions, consider having a consultation with a medical oncologist, particularly if you have high risk disease. While your treatment will most likely be managed by a urologist or radiation oncologist, meeting with a medical oncologist will help you to have a full picture of all treatment options available to you. This is especially important should your cancer return at some point in the future. LEARN MORE We encourage you to use this information in conversations with your health care team about prostate cancer and related topics. For more information about prostate cancer and ZERO – The End of Prostate Cancer, visit our website www.zerocancer.org/learn.

ZERO - The End of Prostate Cancer provides this information as a service. It is not intended to take the place of medical professionals or the recommendations of your healthcare team. We strongly suggest consulting your healthcare team if you have questions about your specific care. This program is made possible with support from Genomic Health.


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