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Some prostate cancer treatments may do more harm than good

Category: Prostate

Following a positive PSA test for prostate cancer, many doctors are quick to start men on an aggressive treatment path. Patients go along with this because they are eager to have the potentially deadly tumor removed. However, more evidence is emerging that avoiding certain treatments may be more beneficial for some men.

This is because, unlike most other types of cancer, prostate cancer often takes an extremely long time to grow and spread to other areas of the body. Some men who develop the condition may die of natural causes before their tumors ever become dangerous.

Given the fact that many prostate cancer treatments can cause serious side effects, including incontinence and erectile dysfunction, experts are increasingly warning that these therapies may not be necessary.

For example, a group of researchers from Tufts University recently reviewed the results of 75 investigations into the benefits of radiation therapy for prostate cancer and found that evidence supporting the use of this treatment is lacking.

The team concluded that for men with lower-risk prostate cancer, avoiding this treatment may be a reasonable decision.

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