Age isn't a reason to avoid surgery. But if you are 70 or
older, other medical conditions, such as
heart disease, may affect your decision. Men who are
older also have a higher rate of incontinence and impotence after surgery. Age
is especially important to think about if you have early-stage cancer, which
generally grows slowly.
Get a second or even a third opinion
before making your treatment decisions. You may hear differing advice or
opinions, which may seem confusing. But talking with other doctors can help you
make your decision. If your doctor is a medical oncologist, you may want to
talk with other prostate cancer specialists, such as a urologist, a radiation
or urologic oncologist, or a surgeon.
Studies show that fewer side effects are
reported at large medical centers, where the surgeons do prostatectomies more
often and so are more experienced and skilled.3