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Questions to Ask My doctor

  • How advanced is my prostate cancer?
  • What is its stage? (How far does it seem to have spread?)
  • What is my cancer's grade? (How fast is it likely to spread?)
  • Is it likely that my cancer will spread?
    • Do I need to be tested more frequently?
    • What do experts recommend about the frequency of testing?
  • What are my treatment choices (including watchful waiting and active surveillance)?
    • What are the advantages and disadvantages of each?
  • What are the chances for treatment to cure my cancer?
  • What are the chances of complication from each treatment?
    • What kinds of complications are likely from each?
    • When are they likely to occur?
  • How are possible treatment side effects managed—for example, urinary incontinence or erectile dysfunction?
  • How soon and how well will my urinary function occur?
  • How soon and how well will my sexual potency recover?
  • How much will each prostate treatment cost?
  • How much will treating possible side effects cost?
  • What types of surgery are available?
  • If I choose a traditional open surgery, how long will I need to fully recover?
  • If I choose minimally invasive robotic–assisted surgery, how long will I need to fully recover?
  • What is your experience with each of these option?
  • How long will I have a catheter after the operation?
  • If I choose radiation therapy, how much recovery time will be required?
  • What are the potential side effects of radiation, both immediately and in the long term?
  • Will I need to take time off from work or other activities?
  • What is likely to happen if I choose no treatment (watchful waiting or active surveillance)?
    • How frequently will I need examinations?
  • Following treatment, how often will I need examinations?
  • What are the chances of my survival in 10 years for each treatment?