While I agree with most of the comments here (including the one about
the vast untapped market for limp noodles
), I have another perspective.
There is definitely a stigma attached to this; it's the stigma of incontinence and ED. No prominent men want to stand up and say what this does to you. While this is understandable, it's also the reason why research into less destructive treatments gets such a low priority.
Starting in the '70s, prominent women started speaking out about
breast cancer. Betty Ford, Nancy Reagan, Shirley Temple Black and many others spoke very publicly about
their disease and what the treatment did to them. People came to understand what it meant to a woman to be disfigured by mastectomy, and less destructive treatment alternatives soon followed.
Until someone like Robert DeNiro (who declined to say how he's being treated) can be as candid as someone like Kate Jackson (who publicly discussed in considerable detail her mastectomy and how it left her), prostate cancer treatment and its side effects will be in the shadows. Certainly Mr. DeNiro is entitled to his medical privacy. The problem is that his is an all too common reaction.
Until some prominent men are willing to shake off the "stigma" of prostate cancer and talk as candidly as these women did, this disease will be widely misunderstood and its effects will be widely underestimated. Until men come out of the prostate cancer closet, there will be no public pressure to develop treatments that don't rob men of their continence and potency. Instead, we'll hear more calls to end PSA testing.