Prostate and urologic cancer treatment
Cancer is not a word anyone wants to hear. But if you're newly diagnosed with prostate or bladder cancer, you probably can't stop thinking about the word "cancer"—and what it means to you and your loved ones.
At The Christ Hospital Health Network, we recognize that facing cancer can feel daunting. But you can rest assured knowing our cancer care team will guide and support you every step of the way.
Our team includes primary care physicians, urologists, medical oncologists, surgeons, radiation oncologists and a dedicated nurse navigator. Together they create an effective and efficient treatment plan that meets your needs.
Your plan will address the type of cancer you have and whether it has spread outside the prostate or bladder.
Active surveillance for prostate cancer
If you have prostate cancer, you may be surprised to hear your doctor recommend that you wait instead of having treatment right away.
Some men are diagnosed with prostate cancer at an early stage before they have any symptoms. Among these men, some will also have cancer considered slow-growing.
If you have early-stage, slow-growing cancer, you may choose "active surveillance" or "watchful waiting" instead of starting treatment. Cancer drugs, surgery and radiation treatments can all cause side effects. For that reason, some patients decide to delay treatment. Instead, they have ongoing blood tests and other follow-up exams.
These tests allow your doctor to watch your cancer over time, postponing treatment until it becomes necessary. Some men never need treatment, because their cancer doesn't advance enough to warrant it. .
Before making any treatment decisions, you should discuss the benefits and risks of active surveillance with your doctor.
Innovative treatment options for prostate and bladder cancer
If you do need immediate treatment for your prostate or bladder cancer, we offer some of the most advanced options available.
There are many kinds of drugs that help treat prostate or bladder cancer. These include:
Chemotherapy—drugs that kill cancer cells and shrink tumors.
Hormone therapy—drugs that stop your body from producing testosterone (a male hormone). Testosterone "feeds" prostate cancer cells and helps them grow.
Immunotherapy—drugs that help your immune system recognize and kill cancer cells. Immunotherapy is one of our newest weapons in the fight against prostate and bladder cancers.
Xofigo—a drug used to treat prostate cancer that has spread only to the bones. Xofigo is the brand name for radium 223, a radioactive material injected into the body. It binds with minerals in the bones to help kill bone tumors.
Radiation therapyWe offer the most advanced forms of radiation therapy (treatments that use radiation to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors). These include:
External beam radiation therapy—a machine outside your body aims radiation at the tumor while you lie on a table. It is used to treat prostate and bladder cancers.
For people with prostate cancer, we also offer the Calypso 4D Localization System, sometimes referred to as "GPS for the body." The Calypso system tracks your tumor and surrounding organs in real time. Even if you move during treatment, your healthy tissues are spared the harmful effects of radiation. Tiny sensors placed into your prostate send signals to the Calypso so it can monitor your prostate's position and movement at all times during treatment.
Internal radiation therapy (brachytherapy)—placing tiny capsules of radioactive material directly into the prostate.
Radiosurgery—a targeted form of radiation therapy for prostate cancer. We were one of the first hospitals in the country to get the Varian Edge radiosurgery system. It treats difficult tumors in fewer treatment sessions and tracks tumors in real-time. Even tumors that move during treatment receive precise amounts of radiation, with less damage to nearby healthy organs.
SurgeryWe perform the full-range of surgical procedures to treat prostate or bladder cancer. These include:
Robotic-assisted surgery —using a robotic arm, our surgeons perform complicated procedures using the smallest of incisions.
Open surgery—our surgeons treat some prostate and bladder cancers with conventional "open" surgeries. These include surgery to remove the entire bladder or prostate gland.