Choosing Your Road

Treatment Decision Factors

So you have been diagnosed with prostate cancer, and it’s up to you and your physician to decide how to treat and manage it. Take control; today is the day to talk to your doctor about your prostate cancer treatment options.

Your physician or healthcare team takes many factors into consideration when recommending your individualized plan for advanced prostate cancer. These can include your age, additional health risks, extent and stage of your cancer, and the potential side effects of various treatments. As research is evolving, there are constantly new treatments available for patients. Be sure to ask your doctor about your options.

Learn as much as possible about the treatment options available and, in conjunction with your healthcare team, make a decision about what is best for you. Consider – and talk to your doctor, nurse, and loved ones about – what you want to be able to do while on treatment.

Some of your decision factors may include:

  • Medical history and prognosis
  • Your personal financial situation
  • Your desire for a certain therapy based on risks, benefits, and your lifestyle

Take the time needed to make thoughtful and informed decisions. Consultation with a prostate cancer specialist, such as a urologist, a radiation oncologist, or a medical oncologist, will give you a comprehensive assessment of the available treatments and expected outcomes. Many hospitals and universities have multidisciplinary prostate cancer clinics that can provide one or more of these consultation services.

Changing Course

Every patient’s treatment plan and journey is unique, so you may need to shift treatment strategies over the course of your disease. This is a normal part of your journey, so feel empowered to make those course-changing decisions with your physician that align with your desires in life.

Your doctor can help you learn more about several available treatment options and the sequence of treatment (i.e., receiving one treatment before or after another) that may be the best for your personal situation. It’s important to consult regularly with your doctor regarding the treatment you’re on and any other treatment options you may be considering. Your healthcare team is also an excellent resource to seek out should you have more questions about choosing a treatment course that is right for you.