When Ben Pfeiffer was diagnosed with prostate cancer in April, his urologist noted in the biopsy report that he was leaning toward recommending that Pfeiffer have his prostate surgically removed.
But Pfeiffer, 58, a married construction supervisor from Las Vegas with two grown daughters, said his wife insisted that he get a second opinion.
Its a good thing she did.
The doctors Pfeiffer subsequently visited at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) did not believe surgery was needed.
Pfeiffer said the results of the tests, which included genomic testing, showed he had a nonaggressive cancer that made him a good candidate for something called active surveillance, also known as watchful waiting.
In other words: No need for surgery or radiation at this time. And perhaps never.
This may sound counterintuitive if you havent kept up with the latest advances in prostate cancer research.
Less than a decade ago, the standard response from a doctor when a man was given a prostate cancer diagnosis was to schedule a surgery to have the organ removed.
When some members of Pfeiffers family heard the news of his cancer, they asked him when he was ...