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Advanced-Stage Prostate Cancer Patients Experience 20-Year Survival Rates With Surgery

May 16, 2011

Long-term survival rates for patients with advanced prostate cancer suggest they can be good candidates for surgery, Mayo Clinic researchers have found. Their study found a 20-year survival rate for 80 percent of patients diagnosed with cancer that has potentially spread beyond the prostate, known as cT3 prostate cancer, and treated with radical prostatectomy, or surgery to remove the prostate gland. Previously, patients found to have cT3 prostate cancer were offered radiation or hormone treatment, but not radical prostatectomy.

The researchers presented their findings during the American Urological Association Annual Meeting in Washington.

“We are doing a much better job of identifying and expanding candidates for surgery, which results in better, longer outcomes for so many of our patients,” says R. Jeffrey Karnes, M.D., of Mayo Clinic’s Department of Urology. “We have confirmed that patients diagnosed with locally advanced prostate cancer can enjoy a long, cancer-free interval.”

The 80 percent survival rate for cT3 diagnoses at 20 years compares to 90 percent for cT2, or cancer confined to the prostate. This long-term follow-up of patients who underwent surgery between 1987 and 1997 is an important advance in understanding the quality outcomes for cT3 patients. The study sample included patients diagnosed and operated on between 1987 and 1997. Ongoing research will examine contemporary data.

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