Goodlife asks: "If you ever were to bet on a golf match, would you bet on Tiger Woods or the local golf pro ?"
I'd be going with Tiger. But, if we were at a PGA this week and I was betting on who would finish first, Tiger or one of the other golfer's, I'd not be paying much attention to how many games they'd played in their career. No doubt the number of games, and even the number of times they've played a particular course, is a factor, but there are other more important critical factors to consider. So too with surgeons.
Unfortunately for the most part all we have as patients to go on with surgeons is generally somewhat broad brush stroke information such as number of surgeries. I doubt very much when a PCa surgeon needs an RP that they're basing their decision on whose table to lie down on, on simply number done. It won't be a first time surgeon, but after the number is somewhere north of 50 I suspect other factors (average length of surgery, post surgical complication rates, blood loss, cool head in a crisis among them) take over. This is information a doctor can find out about
, some documented, some word of mouth from respected sources. It is information that is difficult and sometimes impossible for non-medical patients to access, and so we are left with seeing in a glass darkly and making do with what we have.
There is no easy solution for a non-medical person to get the information we'd all like to have. But I always encourage new PCa people (and isn't it amazing how many phone calls you get from guys who have just got the news) to think about
the sort of criteria their doctor would use in deciding on a treatment, or a treatment person, and then using whatever networking they can to find the answers.
It is amazing how connected we all are once you begin to dig into networking. While it may be six degrees between anyone and someone else, often it is just one or two.
An, others in this thread, thank you for your thoughts. All interesting and helpful. A great thread. In the end all any of us want for ourselves, our loved ones, our friends, is the best shot. Figuring out how to get it is important stuff.
Sheldon AKA Sleepless
Age 67 in Apil '09 at news of 4 of 12 cores positive T2B and Gleason 3 + 3 and 5% to 25% PSA 1.5
Re-read of slides in June said Gleason 3 + 4 same four cores 5% to 15%
June 29 daVinci prostatectomy, Dr. Eric Estey, at Royal Alexandra Hospital Edmonton one night stay
From "knock out" to wake up in recovery less than two hours. Actual surgery 70 minutes
Flew home to Winnipeg on July 3 after 5 nights in Ramada Inn --- perfect recovery spot!
Catheter out July 9
Final pathology is 3 + 4 Gleason 7, clear margins, clear nodes, T2C, sugeron says report is "excellent"
Oct 1st 09 -- dry at night, during day some stress issues.
Oct 31st padless 24/7
First post op PSA Sept 09 less than 0.02
PSA on Oct 23, 2009 less than 0.02
PSA on Jan 8, 2010 less than 0.02
PSA on April 9, 2010 less than 0.02
PSA on July 9, 2010 (one year) less than 0.02