Orchiectomy, removal of the testicles, is generally done as an outpatient procedure and the patient can resume full activity including lifting in a week or two. The basic idea is that PC "feeds" on testosterone and so the source of testosterone is permanently eliminated (hormone therapy is used to temporarily eliminate it.)
It is most likely to be used where the cancer has metastasized (spread throughout the body) or where the patient's health precludes treatments like surgery or radiation.
Removal of the testicles will eliminate all sex drive -- in fact it has been used to render repeat sex-offenders harmless. Other side effects may include enlargement of the breasts and loss of facial hair.
My father chose this treatment because he was caring for my critically ill mother. His to priorities were to continue her care without interruption and to keep his cancer under control until after the end of her life.
Age at diagnosis 66, PSA 5.5
Biopsy 12/08 12 cores, 8 positive
CAT scan, Bone scan 1/09 both negative.
Robotic surgery 03/03/09 Catheter Out 03/08/09
Pathology: Lymph nodes & Seminal vesicles negative
Margins positive, Capsular penetration extensive Gleason 4+3=7
6 weeks: 1 pad/day, 1 pad/night -- mostly dry at night.
10 weeks: no pad at night -- slight leakage day/1 pad.
3 mo. PSA 0.0 - now light pads
6 mo. PSA 0.00 -- 1 light pad/day
9 mo. PSA 0.00 -- 1 light pad/day ED remains
12 mo. PSA 0.00 -- still one light pad and ED