For many people, the words, “you have cancer” are synonymous with a death sentence. Many people start to think of all the people they knew who died within a year of their diagnosis. Within this fear, people tend to think they need the most extreme/aggressive treatment available in order to “buy” as much time as possible.
Before a rash decision is made, there are three key steps to take following your prostate cancer diagnosis:
- Understanding the difference between their perception and past experiences with cancer vs. their current situation. It’s important for men to understand that it is entirely possible to survive their prostate cancer diagnosis without any of the aggressive treatment options, once their risk has been assessed. It is very important, not to panic.
- Once the gleason score and other prostate cancer tests results are known, now is the time to learn about the specifics of your prostate cancer, including your specific risk-group. Understanding the aggressiveness, or lack thereof, of your prostate cancer is very important. Be sure to ask plenty of questions, and take as much time as you need to fully understand your situation.
- Deciding on a course of treatment (or lack thereof in some cases) with your doctor for your prostate cancer. This step will involve the discussion of the numerous treatment options available, and the quality of life issues that are specific to each one. Understanding the different side effects that can accompany each treatment is vital in choosing a particular treatment.
Treating fear before cancer provides men with the opportunity to base their treatment decisions on their diagnosis rather than their fear. It has been well documented that fear-based decisions result in overly aggressive and unnecessary treatment that does not prolong life, and leaves men with lifelong quality-of-life issues, such as urinary incontinence or erectile dysfunction.
You can read the entire article here: “It’s Important to Treat Fear Before Treating Prostate Cancer.”