Our physicians may suggest a management option called “active surveillance” when the prostate tumor:
- Has a low volume of cancer
- Appears to be slow growing
- Has a low-risk of progressing
- Is not causing any symptoms
After the initial diagnostic biopsy, a restaging MRI and biopsy provides physicians with more information about the tumor and helps them determine if active surveillance is the appropriate strategy for a patient. The advantage of this option is the patient can be spared the potential side effects associated with surgery and radiation therapy, which may include erectile dysfunction and urinary incontinence.
The active surveillance approach typically involves following the patient’s PSA levels closely as well as performing repeat biopsies at regular intervals to ensure the cancer is not progressing or changing. If the cancer becomes larger or more aggressive, other treatments — such as surgery or radiation — can be initiated, with excellent results.
Active Surveillance & Age
Although older men are more typically counseled toward active surveillance, younger men with low risk cancers may also consider this option. Biological age (the current health of your body) is more important than chronological age when considering this and other treatment options. In some cases, the Specialized Oncology Care & Research in the Elderly (SOCARE) clinic at the University of Chicago Medicine assists the medical team in evaluating older patients for active surveillance and other prostate cancer therapies.
Convenient Locations for Cancer Care
Request an Appointment for Prostate Cancer Care
Please complete this secure form to request an appointment with a UChicago Medicine prostate cancer expert. A representative will contact you within one to two business days to help you schedule the appointment.
This form is not for same- or next-day appointments. If you prefer to speak with someone directly, please call 1-855-702-8222. If you have symptoms of an urgent nature, please call your doctor or go to an emergency room immediately.
For Referring Physicians
To refer a patient for prostate cancer care, please call UCM Physician Connect at 1-800-824-2282.
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