Robotic v Open Prostate Cancer Surgery

A recent study, published in the Lancet Oncology compared robotic to open prostate cancer surgery (prostatectomy). The study found that over a two-year period both forms of surgery produced equivalent results for preserving erectile function and urinary continence.   However, there were some differences.

Cancer Insurance & Family Leave News

There are a number of items of news about state expansion of Medicaid, Family Leave and some attempts by certain states to screw their citizens who have cancer or chronic illnesses go around the federal medical insurance laws by

Hypofractionation and Hydrogel Spacer – Two New Important Changes in the Delivery of Primary Radiation Therapy for Prostate Cancer 

How radiation is delivered as a primary treatment for prostate cancer therapy has been changing, mostly since 2017.  The change involves two different items, one the method of delivery of the radiation and the increasing use of a newly developed “safety” product that lowers the adverse side effects of the radiation treatment.

The Prostate Health Index (phi) Limits the Need for Additional Biopsies

The Prostate Health Index (phi) that is used to detect prostate cancer can limit the number of repeat biopsies that Urologists recommend. It also reduces the risk of over diagnosis, saves money and cuts down on the risk of biopsy-induced infections. 

Shingrix – A new and Better Shingles Vaccine

An article in the New York Times describes a new and more effective vaccine against Shingles, which you should consider getting. 


Shingles can be a very painful and debilitating disease which most of us are at risk to get.  The FDA has approved this new vaccine; Shingrix and it should be generally available within the next month. 


There does seem to be an “ouch” factor involved in receiving the vaccine and it does require two separate injections, but getting Shingles is much worse.


We urge that you speak with your doctor and ask if you should be getting this vaccine.  Having Shingles is no fun.


Joel T. Nowak, MA, MSW wrote this Post.  Joel is the CEO/Executive Director of Cancer ABCs.  He is a Cancer Thriver diagnosed with five primary cancers - Thyroid, Metastatic Prostate, Renal, Melanoma, and the rare cancer Appendiceal cancer.


Hormone Therapy Negatively Impacts African American Men

  A study found that African American men had a higher rate of death from non-prostate cancer problems than non-African American men after receiving short-term hormone therapy (ADT) prior to having brachytherapy (seeds). There are significant implications beyond this research.

Caution - Testosterone Flare During Transition from Degarelix to Leuprolide

Transitioning from Degarelix to Lupron can cause a dangerous PSA flare that needs to be avoided by adding an anti-androgen drug like Casodex prior to making the transition; not unlike when Lupron is started as an initial treatment.