The accompanying table features the four definitive treatment options for localized prostate cancer. All four basic treatment options, high intensity focused ultrasound (hifu), cryoablation (freezing), radiation (includes brachytherapy and proton beam) and surgery/robotics have similar survival benefits.
Also included with the table are several important footnotes, one of which highlights the very misleading subject of cure rates which are at best very rough approximations and their results are not worthy of print.
The complications associated with all four treatment options can be broadly categorized into two main groups:
A. Unique to that treatment option only and,
B. Common, those complications that are common to all four treatment options for localized prostate cancer. By far the biggest category within that Common group are those selected risks of impotence and incontinence. However, the incidence of these Common complications, particularly those of incontinence and impotence, varies considerably between the four treatment options of hifu, cryoablation, radiation and radical surgery/robotics.
A. Unique Complications
These possible complications are uncommon but should be understood and for radical surgery/robotics they are peri-operative blood loss and the need for possible blood transfusions. A shortened penis is also possible as a consequence of radical surgery/robotic prostate removal. For radiation options a unique but possibly life threatening complication is that of hemorrhagic cystitis and hemorrhagic proctitis while for cryoablation a unique complication can be a numb penis.
B. Complications Common to All Treatment Options
1) Severe Complications
These include those of prostato-rectal fistula or death and fortunately, are rare and mostly seen after radical surgery/robotics.
2) Moderately troublesome, relatively infrequent but common to all treatment options are those complications of urethral stricture and bladder neck contracture.
3) Minor and temporary complications that occur relatively frequently in all four treatment options are those post operative issues such as urinary tract infections, epididymo-orchitis, burning, urinary frequency , urgency,etc
4) Quality of Life (QoL) issues which are common and often NOT temporary and vary considerably between the four treatment options have been listed on the accompanying table as Selected Risks.
These risks are the damaging effects on manhood as in impotence or erectile dysfunction (ED) and those of urinary leakage or incontinence.
These are the two most important and the most common and are often permanent complications that negatively impact the QoL of not only the man and his spouse but also their union and partnership.
The treatment option, by far, that achieves the highest rate of impotence as well as all types of urinary incontinence from total to partial and with the biggest negative impact on QoL is the radical surgical/robotic option for prostate cancer treatment. In fact these surgical treatment options represent a direct assault on manhood and men choosing this radical surgical/robotic removal option to treat their prostate cancer are playing Russian Roulette with their QoL.
Prostate cancer just does not have to be cut out to offer cure and men and their spouses would do well to empower themselves about treatment options for localized prostate cancer. Especially, about those minimally invasive options such as hifu as patients are unlikely to receive unbiased information about these options for localized prostate cancer from their treating physician or their prostate cancer support group. – See more at: http://www.hifurx.com/blog/page/3/#sthash.lH71JtiB.dpuf