Posted 2/18/2009 8:19 PM (GMT -6)
This could be useful; however, newly-diagnosed men would be well advised not to buy the hype of the Da Vinci as a cure itself. Rather, men need to properly assess the man that controls the robot - not just the robot. Studies have shown that the cure rate for radical prostatectomy is that same, whether it is done by the Da Vinci, by laparascopic, or by the traditional open method. I cannot say this enough - there is no difference in the cure rate! The most important factor is the experience and skill of the physician performing the procedure.
Here are the first four questions I think a newly-diagnosed man should ask every physician with whom he consults (and if you're not consulting with more than one, shame on you!) These will help you ascertain the experience and skill of said doc:
1) How many men with prostate cancer have you personally treated?
2) Do you keep a database of all the men you have treated, ie, do you track all the men you've treated?
3) How many of these men have PSA 0.2 ng/ml 10 years after treatment?
4) If you were to treat my particular case of prostate cancer, based on other men you've treated with similar pre-treatment characteristics, what is my precise chance of achieving PSA 0.2 ng/ml 10 years after treatment?
If a doc can't, or won't, answer those questions, then he doesn't really know how effective he is at curing prostate cancer - he's just guessing.
Any man that has been diagnosed - ask these questions of your urologists that want to cut on you and the rad oncs that want to irradiate you. Then ask a lot more questions...