You do have time to make a decision. Even high risk PC is slow growing. there was a study that showed that even for high risk guys, those that waited 3 months between diagnosis and radiation treatment had the same outcomes as those who rushed to treatment. Take your time.
Focus on what is at hand, instead of what may occur in some distant imagined future. Take it one step at a time only.
The first thing to do is to confirm your diagnosis. A bone scan/CT will detect any large tumors that have grown in bones , and the CT scan will detect any enlarged lymph nodes that may have been invaded by cancer.
With confirmation that it hasn't spread beyond the pelvic area, the next step is to decide on which curative treatment to pursue.
I think Michael-T broke it down very simply and elegantly. if you want to know the numbers attached to your two options...
(1) External beam radiation to the whole pelvic area with a brachytherapy boost to the prostate alone.
(2) External beam radiation to the whole pelvic area only
Option 1 is quite a bit more curative than option 2. 83% of high risk men seem to have been permanently cured with option 1, compared to 62% with option 2.
However, there are more urinary side effects with option 1. Late-term serious urinary side effects (late term means they show up more than 6 months after treatment) occurred in 1 in 5 men with option 1, and 1 in 20 men with option 2. So if you have a history of urinary difficulties, you may prefer option 2.
There are two stickies at the top of the HealingWell's prostate cancer forum. One is a list of all the abbreviations. The other is an explanation of all the medical information you are likely to run into.
Allen - not an MD
•PSA=7.3, prostate volume=55cc, 8/17 cores G6 5-35% involvement
•SBRT 9 yr onc. results
•SBRT 7 yr QOL results
•treated 10/2010 at age 57 at UCLA,PSA now: 0.1,no lasting urinary, rectal or sexual SEsmy PC blog