Subscribe to RoboticOncology.com RSS Feed

Prostate Cancer: Watch and Wait or Ignore and Wait?

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwired - Apr 25, 2014) A long-term European study highlighted key
 patient compliance issues in the prostate cancer active surveillance strategy. In lieu of proactive prostate cancer treatments such as robotic prostate surgery, hormone therapy, or radiation, some men choose to postpone treatment and monitor the progression of their disease. Researchers found that one quarter of European men who chose to "watch and wait" failed to comply with follow-up testing, a critical component to long-term success, according to experts.

David B. Samadi, MD, Chairman of Urology and Chief of Robotic Surgery at Lenox Hill Hospital, perceives this pitfall as a major risk factor for prostate cancer survival. "Active surveillance and watchful waiting are only viable options if patients understand the critical nature of screening compliance," said Dr. Samadi. "So many men with prostate cancer are symptom-free and without frequent exams we have no way of preventing the disease from spreading."

Active surveillance involves undergoing regularly scheduled prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood tests, digital rectal exam (DRE) physicals, and prostate biopsies and ultrasounds. As reported at the European Association of Urology annual meeting in Stockholm, 27 percent of active surveillance study participants abandoned their screening plans over the 13-year review period. Even at just three months post-diagnosis, 19 percent of the men refused to undergo a second prostate biopsy.

While the specific reasons for non-compliance are unknown, researchers speculate that overconfidence in a low-risk diagnosis and fear of treatment side effects may play a role. Experts from the American Cancer Society predict that active surveillance dropout rates are even higher in the U.S.

"Our job as prostate cancer experts is to help men understand the risks and benefits of each treatment path," stated Dr. Samadi. "Postponing treatment may be right for some men, but if they turn their backs on active disease monitoring, they risk a missed opportunity for curative treatment in the future. There are no guarantees that prostate tumors grow slowly."

In fact, 28 percent of study participants required some type of prostate cancer treatment within the 13 years. While the group survival rate was very high -- 94 percent -- without consistent screening, those requiring treatment would not have been aware of the more timely need.

"Men who skip treatment, screening, and medical counsel could be playing a game of Russian roulette," said Dr. Samadi. "Peace of mind comes from being vigilant about your physical wellbeing. Without monitoring, there's no way to know if and when you're treatment-ready."

Back to Press Releases


Bookmark Using:
Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Email Yahoo

Share on Facebook

Call to Make an Appointment With Dr. David Samadi:

1-212-365-5000

Click the contact link to learn how Dr. Samadi can help treat your prostate cancer and give you back your quality of life.

* The benefits of robotic surgery cannot be guaranteed as surgery is both patient and procedure specific. Previous surgical results do not guarantee future outcomes.




Testimonials
Judith D., USA

We liked your answer very much. No one touches my patients but me. At that moment, we knew we had found our surgeon. We have never regretted that decision for a single moment. You and your staff have a level of knowledge, experience and professionalism that is unparalleled.

more..
Martin K,

Earlier this year I was given the devastating news that I had prostate cancer.  I was diagnosed after a routine company medical, followed by a Biopsy.  From that day and during the following weeks I researched the subject to try and find a subtitle course of treatment...

more..
Ian R, Toronto, Canada

Just over a year ago on December 22, 2008 I was diagnosed with prostate cancer. I met with Dr. Samadi in New York on a recommendation from a close friend. The interview was a decisive turning point in my fortunes.

more..
Stepan S. , Russia, Moscow

  Best in this area, a “Leonardo of our time,” an outstanding human being and a true expert in the field of urologic oncology and robotic surgery - Dr. David Samadi.

more..