How the Charts Work
This page will help you understand how the charts work. The charts for comparing prostate cancer treatments consist of two types of information.
First, the results of each of the articles that match your situation are plotted as data points on a two-dimensional grid. Each point on the grid represents the results of one of the articles. The scale on the left is the percentage of patients that were “PSA Progression-Free”, meaning they did not experience a recurrence of their cancer. The closer to the top of the chart, the better the results. The scale at the bottom is the number of years since the treatment. The farther to the right, the longer the time from treatment.
Second, the data points for each treatment method (e.g. Surgery) are encircled by a mathematically-calculated weighted standard-deviational ellipse, to help you easily visualize how an entire group of patients using that treatment method are doing. This circular shape is a way to visualize the average of all of the articles, and the direction of the treatment effectiveness over time. If you don’t see the ellipse for a particular type of treatment, it is because there have not yet been enough published articles for that treatment in this risk category to properly calculate the ellipse.
If you are curious about how the charts work, please see this technical explanation of how the standard deviational ellipse works.
The ellipse shows two important things:
If you look at the mid portion of the ellipse it will tell you, on average, how the patients receiving that treatment are doing.
The direction of the ellipse can give you an idea of how the patients receiving that treatment are doing over time. If the shape of the ellipse points downward then an increasing number of patients are failing, long after their treatment.
How the Charts Work: How to Compare Prostate Cancer Treatments
The charts are interactive; click the check boxes next to the treatments you wish to compare to show the results for that treatment. Click the check boxes again to turn off the comparison for that treatment. You can repeat this process as many times as you wish. You can further refine the results by clicking directly on any of the terms in the legend at the lower-right, to turn off or on any of the treatment classifications, or the ellipse surrounding the chart data points. You can also turn the ellipse on and off by clicking the legend item that has the Greek letter sigma (σ) at the end.
Once you have made your comparison selections, you can print the results. Just click the Print button to bring up the printer dialog for your system. You can also download a PDF file with your chosen comparison if you wish to send this information to someone else by email.
UNDERSTANDING PROSTATE CANCER
What is Prostate Cancer?
What is Prostate Cancer, the Symptoms, Risk Factors? What does the Prostate do, where is it located?
Diagnosed with Prostate Cancer?
What tests confirm the presence of prostate cancer? Learn how doctors diagnose prostate cancer.
Treating Prostate Cancer.
Patients have options when it comes to the prostate cancer treatments. Learn about your options.
Help Others Choose the Best Treatment!
The Prostate Cancer Free Foundation, reviews the results of hundreds of thousands of men treated for prostate cancer. Tracking them for years. This information is available to you, and others like you, to help find the best prostate cancer treatment. This work takes time, effort, resources all of it done by volunteers. Please help us continue. Please Donate!