Prostate Cancer Treatment Options Spectrum

Prostate cancer treatment options fall into a spectrum of least aggressive to most aggressive when it comes to how to treat the disease. There are a lot of different kinds of treatment for prostate cancer and the same ones aren’t right for everyone. Every man should talk to his doctor about what treatment is right for him based on his diagnosis and overall health.

In many cases, prostate cancer is a very treatable disease. However, some treatment options, especially the more aggressive ones, may lead to side effects such incontinence and sexual problems that significantly impact quality of life.

The graphic below outlines where several different prostate cancer treatment options call on the spectrum. Prostate Cancer Treatment Options Aggressiveness Scale

On one end of the spectrum in active surveillance, which means that men will choose to pursue no treatment at all, but they are closely monitored by their physician with regular PSA tests and biopsies as needed to see if and how the cancer may be progressing. On the other end of the spectrum is a radical prostatectomy which is surgery to completely remove the prostate. There are different types of surgery available, some more invasive than others, but regardless of the type,  this is considered a very aggressive approach to treatment.

The choice a man ultimately makes will depend on his diagnosis and overall health. Doctors advise that to determine the best prostate cancer treatment, men should consider the following things:

  • size and location of the tumor
  • whether or not the cancer has spread outside the prostate
  • overall health

Learn more about different prostate cancer treatment options here. 

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