Help - Looking for Recommendation for a daVinci Prostate Surgeon In Michigan

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aggie71
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 2/13/2008 3:45 PM (GMT -6)   
I was diagnosised with prostate cancer on Jan. 3rd. Gleason score 6, 3 of 11 biopsies positive. I am seeking recommendations for surgeons that perform the daVinci prostectomy in Michigan.  My insurance company in Michigan(Blue Care Network of Michigan) has refused my request to travel to Texas to have the procedure done by Dr. Randy Fagin. After extensive research, I find myself starting all over for another surgeon in the Michigan area. I am really disappointed and unable to find out much information from the websites on the daVinci surgeons in Michigan.  The surgeons that I have contacted have only performed 80 to 150, performing 1 or 2 surgeries a week(Dr's. Seifman, Cher, And Willoughby). This is very disappointing since Dr. Fagin in Texas has performed over 1200.  From all my weeks of research, one thing clearly stands out. The more daVinci surgeries that the surgeon has performed, the better the outcome for the patient. Both in removal of the cancer and the quality of life afterward. Also, the staff that the surgeon brings to assist is very vital.  (Dr. Seifman said that he used the Dr's in hospital residency to assist him). This is not a positive thing! I have read of some skilled surgeons at the Henry Ford Hospital, but I have not read any blogs or chat rooms where patients have mentioned their treatment or outcomes. Some doctors contradict the findings of Dr. Menon at the Henry Ford Hospital, but he seems to have written numerous articles/studies about the daVinci prostectomy.  I am seeking personal experience from patients that have had a daVinci prostatetcomy in Michigan. I was originally scheduled in Texas for surgery on Feb. 21st and now I have this delay.  If I am unable to find the answers here in Michigan, I will be forced to pay out of pocket and travel to Texas. Your input is vital.

daveed
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 172
   Posted 2/13/2008 4:52 PM (GMT -6)   
Several of us, me included have had the procedure done at Henry Ford. I did not have mine with Dr. Menon because he was booked solid. Mine was performed by Dr. Peabody. My experience was very satisfactory if one can say that about this procedure. The follow up care has been very good and Dr. Peabody does not make you feel rushed at all in any pre surgical meetings. I have a slight incontinence issue after 15 months which we are working to resolve. I unfortunatly fall into the "top" 5%. 95% of their patients have successful outcomes. He was able to spare both nerve bundles and erections assisted with Lavetra are satisfactory. Hope this helps>

Diagnosed March 06
PSA 4.4
Two biopsies. One core of each 5% cancer, two suspicious
Gleason 3+3=6
DaVinci surgery Nov 1, 06
Cancer confined to prostate
Ist PSA 6 weeks post op less than 0.02
2nd PSA 4 months undetectable
Next PSA end of June


Swimom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 1727
   Posted 2/13/2008 5:22 PM (GMT -6)   
Dr. David Wood at U of M Comprehensive Cancer Center. He did Paul's almost 3 yeas ago. Good luck in your decision making process.

Swim
 


mariateresa
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 95
   Posted 2/13/2008 6:34 PM (GMT -6)   
My husband had his surgery done by Dr. Menon at Henry Ford Hospital last September. Here is link for detailed information: http://www.henryford.com/body.cfm?id=41144

Maria Teresa
Husband Age 55 at time of dx; Maria Teresa age 44
Total PSA 8 on 05/21/07
DRE: prostate bumpy
Biopsy on 07/16/07: 5 out of 8 cores positive, Gleason Score 8 (3+4+5)**
CT of the abd/pelvis; Bone Scan; Xrays done on 08/13/07: Normal
Robotic Surgery Scheduled for September 11, 2007 - Cancelled due to anesthesia complications
Robotic Surgery September 25, 2007
Post Op Gleason 4+5; Positive margin right base of prostate; tumor into seminal vesicle; lymph nodes negative
Next step is the post surgical PSA to determine need for additional treatment
10/24/07 PSA .4 (Goal is .02)
01/28/08 PSA .7 - Told to make appt to start hormone tx and to see a radiation oncologist

**"Report to the Nation on Prostate Cancer" published by the Prostate Cancer Foundation, page 11: "In some cases, the pathologist might identify a third pattern, which is less common but that has a higher grade than either of the first two patterns that comprised the Gleason score. The presence of this third pattern might indicate that the tumor is more aggressive than the Gleason score would otherwise imply. For example, if a Gleason 4+3 tumor also has some grade 5 cells, the cancer would be considered as being of higher grade disease overall."


FairRider
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 2/13/2008 7:58 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello aggie71 - We are also in Michigan and met Dr. Menon today. We have surgery scheduled for 3/17. We have done extensive research and it is very hard to tease out what the successes are due to, other than experience. You can email me dpfairbanks@comcast.net and maybe we can help each other here in Michigan.
Age 54
PSA 2.8 in 1999, PSA 2.88 in 2004 - did not follow-up until 12/2007 :(
PSA 5.6 1/2008, but 4.37 on repeat
DRE - unremarkable
Free PSA ratio 0.11
Biopsy 1/25/2008 - 10 Cores - 5 each side. 4 with adenocarcinoma (2 each side)
Gleason 3+3=6 and 3+4=7 - No Stage given on report, maybe T2c?
Planning Robotic Surgery
DECIDING SURGEON & location - INPUT WELCOME!


Swimom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 1727
   Posted 2/13/2008 8:32 PM (GMT -6)   
Aggie71,

Although it's only on man's experience, it is still hard to argue with no urinary leakage and managed erectile function. U of M does hundreds of prostatectomies each year. Beaumont is also a great place. St. Joe's Ypsianti is good. Providence is good, St. John's is good. There are choices galore here. Michigan has more than just great sports teams :>) Well, except for thr Lion's.

Swim
 


mariateresa
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 95
   Posted 2/13/2008 9:08 PM (GMT -6)   
Here is a review from Rate MDs regarding Dr. Menon from Henry Ford Hospital:

http://db.ratemds.com/social/?q=node/28873&did=88795

Maria Teresa
Husband Age 55 at time of dx; Maria Teresa age 44
Total PSA 8 on 05/21/07
DRE: prostate bumpy
Biopsy on 07/16/07: 5 out of 8 cores positive, Gleason Score 8 (3+4+5)**
CT of the abd/pelvis; Bone Scan; Xrays done on 08/13/07: Normal
Robotic Surgery Scheduled for September 11, 2007 - Cancelled due to anesthesia complications
Robotic Surgery September 25, 2007
Post Op Gleason 4+5; Positive margin right base of prostate; tumor into seminal vesicle; lymph nodes negative
Next step is the post surgical PSA to determine need for additional treatment
10/24/07 PSA .4 (Goal is .02)
01/28/08 PSA .7 - Told to make appt to start hormone tx and to see a radiation oncologist

**"Report to the Nation on Prostate Cancer" published by the Prostate Cancer Foundation, page 11: "In some cases, the pathologist might identify a third pattern, which is less common but that has a higher grade than either of the first two patterns that comprised the Gleason score. The presence of this third pattern might indicate that the tumor is more aggressive than the Gleason score would otherwise imply. For example, if a Gleason 4+3 tumor also has some grade 5 cells, the cancer would be considered as being of higher grade disease overall."

Post Edited (mariateresa) : 2/13/2008 7:11:19 PM (GMT-7)


aggie71
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 2/15/2008 3:19 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you so much for responding to my question. It was good to hear from others that are dealing or have dealt with this issue. I have sent emails to every doctor in Michigan that is listed on the daVinci web site and also Michigan daVinci/urology. Dr. Wood has not replied to date. Dr. Peabody at Henry Ford does have the most impressive record to date. I was told by other surgeons that Henry Ford is a teaching/learning hospital and residents would be involved. That would not be a good thing. I did email due to my concern with residents participating in the surgery and received an email that residents are present but do not participate in the surgeries. Dr. Menon no longer takes Blue Care Network. We could have had surgery by the middle of March with him. There are three other doctors in the practice. Dr. Stricker could see us March 4th and have surgery 3 weeks later(March 21). Dr. Rogers could see us March 26th and surgery 3 weeks later(April17?). I think Dr. Rogers is the new kid in the practice previously practicing in Maryland. Dr. Peabody's !st available consult is April 3rd and surgery 2 months later(June 30?). I was told that he does other types of surgery and has other interests that take him out of the area. I emailed Dr. Peabody and he can move us up to May 14th for surgery. I hate to wait and could see the other physicians sooner for surgery. But I am going by what I have read as far as patient outcome with the more experienced daVinci surgical doctors. Does anyone have any experience with Dr. Stricker or Craig? I find it amazing that everything is booked so far out. It is also a shame that there aren't more websites to find out info. on doctors and patient outcomes. I am use to the medical treatment iin Texas and I must say that I am disappointed in what I have learned from my experience in Michigan. In Texas, there is access to doctors, treatment, information,and the co-operation between all parties was mutually respected.

Swimom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 1727
   Posted 2/15/2008 5:28 PM (GMT -6)   
Try calling Dr. Wood. Not all Doc's actually read their e-mails. Many e-mails get dumped into the junk mail pile. Perhaps go straight to the U of M site...or make a phone call. I'm sure they take Blue Care. MCare Ins. sold to them last year. We have the same insurance.

Swim
 


Jeff 11
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 2/15/2008 5:47 PM (GMT -6)   

Hi I used Dr Menon 6/06. My surgery & recovery went very well. I did a lot of research & found that Dr Menon is one of the best in the world. Good Luck

 


Swimom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 1727
   Posted 2/17/2008 10:16 PM (GMT -6)   
Aggie 71,

I drive the I-94 expressway a lot and that huge promotion for St. Joe's 'Cyber Knife" catches my attention every time. If the knife (which is actually radiation) does as much for men with prostate cancer as it has done for brain tumor sufferers, I believe it may be well worth investigating. We have only good things to say about the cancer center at St. Joes. Just me thinking out loud :>)

Swim
 


aggie71
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 2/18/2008 12:25 AM (GMT -6)   
I did read information on the CyperKnife. It does sound promising. At this time I am unsure since it is relatively new technology. Thanks for the information though. I also hear that the freezing/cryogenics is a new option. But when dealing with cancer, I'm not willing to try something that is not tried and true. I know my choices with radiation and surgery, the other two I don't. I'm sure that you are like I am, in that we read everything printed in trying to make the "right" decision. I have found that I just get further confused. So I have decided to go with my first decision. I am scheduled for May 14th for the daVinci with Dr. Peabody in Detroit. Dr. Peabody does have cancellations from time to time and will call to schedule me in sooner when one happens. My wife and I are concerned about the ED and incontenance. We have an amazing story. On May 15th, 2002, we remarried each other after a 25 year absence. You see we married at 17 and divorced at 21. Married other people and raised families. They were unhappy marriages and we both divorced after over 20 years in those marriages. We met again planning our High School Reunion. Our lives have been so blessed for the past seven years. Everyday is Valentines Day! Now we are lucky to have each other and want to have a long life together, no matter what the outcome.
I am interested in what treatment is available for Ed and Incontenance should I have those problems. You read that with an experienced daVinci surgeon, the outcome with a prostatectomy should be better. But from the forums that I have read, Ed and Incontenance are still an issue with patients even a year after surgery. From all treatment options, all patients are dealing with this issue. One is no better than the other.

FairRider
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 2/18/2008 1:05 AM (GMT -6)   
Aggie -

I wrote that we met Dr. Menon. My husband is very comfortable and I am the one letting go of finding the 'perfect surgeon'. I work in an academic library and have researched all the current literature - when it comes down to it, you have to go with the doors that seem to be opening. I have to tell you that I asked the question about residents performing surgery because I understand they have to learn sometime. I was told that Dr. Menon does all the robotic control and that residents do their hands on with other doctors. the y said that people who come for Dr. Menon want Dr, Menon, so that is who is at the controls. I also discovered that our BCBS through MEssa WILL reimburse his fee, which is based on your income, unless you make 250K + - then the fee is 16K. Under that, its on a scale, and that may fall in your networks 'allowed amount".

You can ask me anymore you want. We were also interested in Dr. Peabody, but want an earlier date.

Feel free to email me directly at fairbanks@hope.edu
Age 54
PSA 2.8 in 1999, PSA 2.88 in 2004 - did not follow-up until 12/2007 :(
PSA 5.6 1/2008, but 4.37 on repeat
DRE - unremarkable
Free PSA ratio 0.11
Biopsy 1/25/2008 - 10 Cores - 5 each side. 4 with adenocarcinoma (2 each side)
Gleason 3+3=6 and 3+4=7 - No Stage given on report, maybe T2c?
Planning Robotic Surgery
DECIDING SURGEON & location - INPUT WELCOME!


Cedar Chopper
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 432
   Posted 2/18/2008 1:05 AM (GMT -6)   
Aggie,

I'm sitting here a few blocks from Highway 21 in Texas......
You landed a good ways from home - but the Michigan options for treatment are excellent.
"Reunion" has more meaning to you two than most!

You might click on the links in my signature to qualm your fears about post-surgery incontience and E.D.
Very few stay incontinent past week 16 and most have usable erections at month 24 (sooner if they work at it with: pumps &  PE5's like Viagra, and especially injections).

Even though my T-sip blood is dark orange I am happy to say:
Gig 'em!

CCedar
ICTHUS!

2 Years of PSA between 4 and 5.5  + Biopsy 23DEC06 
Only 5 percent cancer in one of 8 samples.  +  Gleeson 3+3=6
OPEN R P 16FEB07 at age 54. 1+" tumor - touching inside edge of gland.  + Confined:)
Pad Free @ 14 weeks.  Six Month PSA <.003  :)   Nine month PSA <.008
:)
At 9 months, ED treated with Pump Exercises & 100mg Viagra Daily

Swimom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 1727
   Posted 2/18/2008 1:44 PM (GMT -6)   
Aggie,

My friend, there is nothing new about the Cyber Knife! It's been around longer than robotic probably. Been saving lives of brain tumor victims for over a decade already. I recall the first pediatric renal and thorasic surgeries being done at the U several years ago. How exciting it was to see such outcomes among our precious future!

I'm gonna do some investigating, if for no other reason that it's interesting.

Swim
 


BOWLING07
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 3/7/2008 10:59 AM (GMT -6)   
Dr. Dimesh (?) John Telang.  Works in the Roseville, St Clair Shore and Grosse Pte area I think. Surgery was performed at St John on Moross, in Detroit, MI.  Not sure of the spelling of the first name.  Anyway, he did my friend's surgery back in Nov 07, and he is doing fine.  Read my earlier blogs and you will see how well he has progressed.  Still having ED problems.  Have been able to penitrate from time to time.

RoboGuy
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 3/7/2008 12:45 PM (GMT -6)   
I had my surgery in Grand Rapids with Dr. Maatman who has done over 300 daVinci's with excellent results. From other posts I have seen, his fees are considerably less than some others. Rodrigues(sp?) is the other daVinci surgeon that has done a lot and they both work out of Spectrum and St.Mary's.

Diagnosed 10/07; 2 0f 12 positive, T1c, Gleason 6
Initial PSA of 4.6, DRE Negative, Brother had PCa
Bone Scan, MRI, negative
daVinci Robotic 12/15/07; Pathology 25%-one side, margins all good
Final Gleason 6, 3+3
6 wk. PSA=0.06!
No incontinence after catheter removed, Yeh!
Levitra + pump works; no response otherwise.


Dadislivingwithprostatecancer
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 3/12/2008 5:36 AM (GMT -6)   
Dr. Steven Jensen, Saginaw, MI

Steve N.
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2013
Total Posts : 95
   Posted 2/13/2013 12:21 PM (GMT -6)   
Aggie--
 
I'm in a West Michigander in a similar boat.  Have appt. with Dr. Menon next Wed.  Goin' with experience myself and have the same trouble on this side of the state.  Dr. Lane is an MD and PhD with Spectrum, and only has done 300 robotic surgeries, though his manager states "outcomes are good."  Haven't really heard of any super stars on our side of the state, but that doesn't mean there aren't good surgeons.  Maybe their marketing isn't as good?
 
I don't know.  (sigh!)
 
Also, see comments on my post asking for Dr. Mani Menon input.  One guy recommended Stricker,  I believe.
 
Good luck.  I'll keep watching for input as well.
 
 

MoreData
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2010
Total Posts : 35
   Posted 2/13/2013 9:06 PM (GMT -6)   
My surgery was with Dr. Stricker at Henry Ford. He came highly recommended by those who had worked with him. My outcomes were great. Zero incontinence and ED cleared up quickly. Two years out my PSA is undetectable. The whole team at Henry Ford was top notch.

I also had Dr. Wood recommended to me by several people who had their surgeries with him, but he wasn't available. I'm glad I chose Stricker, but Wood is clearly very highly regarded as well. I did interview a younger surgeon at U of M who did a lot of robotic surgeries and had very good results, but Dr. Stricker's experience won me over.

Given the top-notch people available just between Henry Ford and U of M I can't see why you would need to travel to Texas.
Age 43 at diagnosis (2011-01) - PSA 5.2
Biopsy 2011-01 - G 3+4=7 in 5 of 12 cores - most 5-30% - L apex 100% w/PNI
Robotic RP 2011-2 at Henry Ford Hospital
Pathology - 3+4, neg everything, 5% involved
So far all post-op PSAs <0.1
Four young kids
No incontinence - ED resolved quickly
More on blog: scottontheorwigs.com
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