Should you get a second opinion for prostate cancer?

Being diagnosed with prostate cancer can cause all kinds of feelings that a second opinion may help relieve. One of the most common initial responses to a prostate cancer diagnosis is panic. Many men feel like they need to make a decision and start treatment within days if not hours. But in most cases, you have time to do thorough research. You also should consider getting a second opinion, not only to confirm your prostate cancer diagnosis, but to make sure you get the information you need on every possible treatment option.

You should feel comfortable telling your current doctor that you want to seek another opinion. Getting a second opinion is very common with cancer diagnoses and some health insurance plans even require this step before approving certain treatment options. Your doctor may even be able to provide recommendations for other specialists to see. If not, check with your insurance company or local hospital physician referral services.

Before your appointment, you’ll need to gather any test results you have—PSA levels, biopsy results, any other lab or imaging results—and your comprehensive medical records. The physician needs as much information as possible to provide an accurate diagnosis and treatment recommendation.

Many men come to Precision Prostate Cancer Care to get a second opinion after a prostate biopsy because of the unique diagnostic and treatment options we offer including advanced 3D prostate biopsy, which creates a map of the entire prostate. The biopsy accurately maps how many tumors you have, how big they are, and their exact location. That information—in combination with advanced biomarker testing–allows your physician to determine how aggressive your cancer is so that the two of you can discuss all of your treatment options.

The 3D prostate biopsy can confirm your initial results or show that your cancer is either more or less extensive than those results. This gives our team the ability to evaluate any recommended treatments—whether it’s active surveillance, radiation, surgery, or something else—and weigh them against the more comprehensive diagnostic data this type of biopsy provides. It also allows physicians at PPCC to see if you are a candidate for targeted focal therapy. This new treatment for prostate cancer with fewer side effects targets just the cancerous cells and freezes those, avoiding any damage to healthy tissue or surrounding nerves.