Treatments and questions – Left Column

Active surveillance – pro-active monitoring of early stage cancer with the intent to cure.

Watchful waiting – regular check-ups possibly leading to hormone treatment or palliative care. This is offered to men who are likely to die from other causes.

Surgery – an operation to remove the prostate, suitable for localised cancer. There are three methods: open surgery, keyhole (laparascopic) surgery or robotically assisted surgery.

External beam radiotherapy – uses radiation to destroy the cancer cells.

Permanent seed brachytherapy – radioactive seeds are implanted long term in the prostate.

High dose rate brachytherapy – radioactive seeds are inserted through an array of tubes into the prostate and seminal vesicles and removed after each session. Patients usually receive two or three sessions of insertion of the seeds over about 30 hours.