Listen to the episode: https://soundcloud.com/prostate-oncology/assemble-your-optimal-treatment-team
|“Patients need to be bold…Your quality of life and your longevity are at stake and making optimal treatment decisions is totally essential.”- Dr. Scholz|
Surgeons (urologists) and random biopsies have ruled the prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment realm for over 100 years. 40 years ago, all cancers were managed by primarily by surgeons. But with the evolution of technology, all other cancers, with the exception of prostate cancer, have moved away from surgeons in the primary care role. The treatment and diagnosis of prostate cancer is stuck in the past.
So, how do you combat this? There are several different players in prostate cancer: Urologists, radiation oncologists, radiologists, medical oncologists, and pathologists. To assemble an optimal treatment team all these doctors must work together to design the best plan for the individual patient. Be sure you are getting second opinions from highly skilled doctors with different specialties to avoid bias. Remember most types of prostate cancer are very slow growing, and you do have the time to seek second opinions. When seeking second opinions, arm yourself with knowledge of your stage. You can find out your stage of prostate cancer by taking the staging quiz on keytopc.com
One must not forget the important role families and support groups play in the prostate cancer journey as well. Support groups and patient conferences are great places to learn about prostate cancer, many are family friendly, or even have breakout sessions exclusively for loved ones. Support groups have many benefits such as being able to interact with men who understand what you are going through, and also gaining inside knowledge to what doctors are the most experienced and highly skilled.
When building your treatment team, arm yourself with knowledge of stage, a strong support team, and highly skilled doctors with different backgrounds. Always seek second opinions.
Prostate Cancer Staging Quiz: keytopc.com
Patient Conference: PCRI.org
Support Group List: PCRI.org/supportgroups
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