Active surveillance is a watch and wait approach for men who have low-risk prostate cancer, meaning you have a small number of cancer cells found in the biopsy, a low PSA, and a low-grade cancer.
With low-risk prostate cancer, your risk of cancer getting out of the prostate and spreading to other parts of the body is “really, really low,” explains Dr. Stephen Freedland, a urologist at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, “so anything we do is going to be overtreatment.” If you do opt for active surveillance, you’ll regularly need a PSA test, rectal exam, and high-quality imaging tests, which can identify minuscule yet important changes.
Active surveillance for prostate cancer is a very specific protocol with requirements and guidelines. While this is not ideal for everyone, it may work for certain patients and spare them the side effects of treatment.
What is Active Surveillance?
The Benefits of Active Surveillance
When Is Active Surveillance Not Enough?
Before you decide on a surgeon or a surgical technique for prostate cancer, you should understand the options and some key questions to ask your surgeon.
An Overview of Prostate Cancer Surgery
How to Choose a Surgeon – Does Volume Matter?
Laparoscopic Surgery vs. Traditional Open Surgery for Prostate Cancer
How Do You Choose the Right Robotic Surgeon?
Your Own Opinion on Surgery vs. Radiation Matters