Does active surveillance mean I don’t need treatment?


Community Answers
  • Len Smith moderator
    11 months ago

    I think most cancer survivors like to share their experience with other cancer survivors. After I had a prostatectomy due to Gleason 8 cancer from the biopsy that turned out to be a Gleason 9 when the pathologists had the whole tumor, one of my neighbors got a Gleason 6 cancer in 2014 and spent a fair amount of time talking to me about it. And the doctors are doing annual MRI’s of his prostate, and from what my friend told me, if the tumor doesn’t grow, they leave it alone for another year. What an advance from years ago! I have a friend who recently celebrated his 10th anniversary of having a prostatectomy for a Gleason 6, and another friend who also had it taken out for a Gleason 6 about 8 years ago. But as Nina said above, listen to your health team as the one thing you’re sure of is that you have cancer. Now leave it up to the pros to watch it and, if necessary, take care of it properly.

  • ninaw moderator
    12 months ago

    Active surveillance is actually considered a prostate cancer treatment option. The term is used to describe an intentional delay in choosing traditional treatments, as part of a larger treatment plan. If you are on active surveillance, you will visit your healthcare provider for more frequent testing and exams. However, it is impossible to predict whether you will need more aggressive treatment at some point in the future. Your healthcare team should help you understand what to watch for, and what might trigger the decision for traditional treatment.

    You can read more about what active surveillance means here: https://prostatecancer.net/treatment/active-surveillance/.

    Best,
    Nina, ProstateCancer.net Team

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