The challenges of determining the proper cancer treatment

Dr. David Samadi

Dr. David Samadi

Being diagnosed with cancer usually sets off a cascade of emotions, making patients feel confused, anxious, and at times even hopeless.

These feelings are warranted, and all too often these feelings are compounded by the challenges of determining a plan of action to treat ones disease.

Following diagnosis, patients are flooded by information and trying to make sense of the different treatment options can make even the most educated patient uncertain.

The internet contains many valuable resources, but advertisements are often cloaked as educational tools, and patients should be cautious.

While it is important to be educated regarding your disease, talking with your physician and asking for recommended resources is a safer way to start your education.

Prostate cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in men. It starts in the prostate gland, which is a small walnut-shaped gland that is responsible for the production of seminal fluid.

Prostate cancer is often a slow-growing disease, but in some cases and depending on certain risk factors, it can be an aggressive disease and spread rather quickly.

It is estimated that in 2015 in the United States, there will be about 220,800 new cases of prostate cancer and about 27,540 deaths from prostate cancer. This means about one in seven men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime.

Traditionally, patients had two main treatment options: surgery or radiation. Based on a patient’s goals, disease state and health, an appropriate treatment plan would be made.

However, over the past decade the market place has become flooded with new technologies. Furthermore, patients are relying less on their physician to make the decision for them and are taking an active role.

As newer therapies are introduced, patients are not always equipped to decipher good marketing from medical facts.

Robotics is one such technology that has been quickly embraced and adapted to medical therapy.

In the case of robotic prostate surgery, the robot builds on concrete oncologic principals. Early on, it was shown that removal of the cancerous tissue, in this case the prostate, results in improved survival.

Dr. Samadi poses next to a robotic surgery machine.Joyce, Allison, NYDN Freelance

Dr. Samadi poses next to a robotic surgery machine.

Robotic surgery increases the magnification and visualization of the surgical field while allowing for precise and intentional movements. As a result, in the hands of a skilled surgeon the prostate can be removed with greater attention resulting in improved functional outcomes, decreased blood loss, and a shorter recovery.

Robotic radiosurgery, or Cyberknife, on the other hand is a completely different adaptation of robotic technology.

First, the name radio surgery is misleading, as this is not actually surgery but rather radiation therapy. In this treatment option, a computerized robot is programmed to automatically deliver high doses of radiation to the prostate gland, delivering a highly targeted therapy.

Originally, the technology was developed for dynamic tissues, like the lung which are in constant movement. However, after-studies have showed that the prostate is susceptible to subtle movement as gas moves through a man’s bowels.

While radiation therapy has been employed by oncologists for decades, the Cyberknife utilizes a dramatically different dosing regimen called hypofractionation.

Traditionally, external radiation is given over approximately 40 treatments. With hypofractionation, patients receive less than half the traditional radiation dose in a significantly shorter period of time. The belief is that as the individual doses are higher, less total radiation is required to have the same oncologic effect.

The pros of Cyberknife include no hospitalization, low levels of toxicity produced, and less pain compared to other procedures.

The cons of Cyberknife include fatigue, erectile dysfunction, no doctor or surgeon controlling the device, a lack of high-definition internal visuals to accurately diagnose and treat prostate cancer, and difficulty in accurately staging the cancer.

It also requires multiple trips to the hospital for treatments, and it is a fairly new technology which means there is limited clinical history to determine the true long-term effectiveness.

Dr. David Samadi is a board-certified urologic oncologist trained in open and traditional and laparoscopic surgery, and an expert in robotic prostate surgery. He is chairman of urology, chief of robotic surgery at Lenox Hill Hospital and professor of urology at Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine. He is a medical correspondent for the Fox News Channel’s Medical A-Team and the chief medical correspondent for am970 in New York City, where he is heard Sundays at 10 a.m. Learn more at and Follow Dr.Samadi on Twitter and Facebook.

[The content provided through this article and should be used for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice. Always seek the advice of a relevant professional with any questions about any financial decision you are seeking to make.]

For more DAILY VIEWS, The News’ new contributor network, click here.

daily views ,

Source link


Pin It on Pinterest

Share This
NBC tries to promote karate for 2020 Olympics, shows taekwondo
Ala. lawyer busted trafficking methamphetamine, 369 grams seized
Former Cuomo aide killed in crash on Long Island Expressway
Critics rip Cuomo plan that combines tax and wage subsidies
Oil prices fall as analysts say August price rally has been overblown
Asian shares slip, dollar stands tall on Fed hike bets
Japan Inc unenthused over Abe's stimulus, BOJ easing: Reuters poll
Facebook can climb more than 20 percent on ad growth: Barron's
Singapore Luxury Real Estate: Back to a Buyer's Market
Sail The Seven Seas With Ease In The Oyster 625 Bandido
The Montblanc Meisterstück Is On Point
The Wining Wines of the 2015 En Primeur Campaign
Can’t believe you ate the whole thing? Blame ‘false hunger’
Lead in NYC tap water is a danger despite quality system
Seattle toddler speaks first words after nearly drowning
Humans first infected Neanderthals with herpes, tuberculosis
Barbra Streisand Tells Apple to Fix Siri's Pronunciation of Last Name
Watch Metallica Debut Punishing 'Hardwired' Live at Minneapolis Concert
Matt Roberts, Original 3 Doors Down Guitarist, Dead at 38
Frank Ocean Reflects on Creating 'Blonde' in Tumblr Posts
Obama wants more choices for consumers using cable boxes
Sanders preaches economic equality at the Vatican
Senator calls out CUNY boss Milliken on campus anti-Semitism
Angry campaign making strange bedfellows out of bedfellows
Basketball Football Other Sports
SEE IT: Softball player pulls off behind-the-back bunt
Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov’s office raided in Moscow
Isola: Phil Jackson no longer the cool, calm man on bench
Mobile Social
How carbon nanotubes could give us faster processors and longer battery life
Facebook’s new teens-only app Lifestage turns bios into video profiles
Looklive helps men shop by mimicking celebs’ styles