If you have been diagnosed with prostate cancer, let me first say that I’m sorry to hear that. Although I cannot take your diagnosis away, I hope I can ease your suffering by giving you the best treatment possible.
If your cancer is confined to the prostate and hasn’t spread, removal of the prostate using the robot (robotic prostatectomy) may be the best option for you. If I do your operation, your chance of being cancer-free afterwards is as good as with any of the world’s best surgeons. And definitely higher than the average UK surgeon. This is because prostate cancer surgery is complex and takes a lot of training and experience to get good at. Lots of surgeons in the UK do the operation, but only a few do it often enough to get the best results for their patients. It’s a bit like playing golf. Just because you can hit the ball doesn’t make you good. It takes practice, training, and lots of hours spent on the course, driving range, and putting green to hit the ball well and get a single-digit handicap. The same is true of prostate cancer surgery. And having a robot is a bit like having the best golf clubs. The best equipment (robot) in inexperienced hands is no better than no robot in good hands. What you want is the best surgeon with the best equipment (robot).
You also need to know that prostate cancer surgery is a team sport. It takes an exceptional team of surgeons, assistants, anaesthetists, theatre staff, and other doctors that help plan the surgeries to get the job done to the highest standard. I only use the best staff in the best hospitals in London, and I plan each and every one of my surgeries with world-leading radiologists (MRI and X-ray experts). This gives me a road-map of your individual prostate anatomy and cancer size, shape and location. I can then determine whether to spare the nerves to improve your recovery of erections, or spare other structures close to the prostate to help you recover your urinary control as quickly as possible.
I also have considerable knowledge about non-surgical treatments for prostate cancer, having been a brachytherapy fellow for 3 years and having done focal therapies in my training. I understand about the different types of radiotherapy and if you need a radiotherapy opinion I know all the best people in that field to send you to.
I believe passionately than prevention is better than cure, and that early diagnosis saves lives. Therefore, if you have a relative with prostate cancer I’d be happy to see you. Did you know that prostate cancer is common in men whose female relatives have had breast or ovarian cancer? The simple blood test (PSA) gets a bad press, but actually it’s very useful when performed more than once at different times. Getting a trend of how the PSA is changing gives a good indication as to whether you are likely to have significant prostate cancer. So I use PSA a lot, both to monitor men at risk of prostate cancer, as well as to monitor the effects of treatment. For patients who need a prostate biopsy, I am an expert in using the best techniques to adequately sample the prostate to give you an accurate diagnosis of your cancer. I usually advise you to have this done while asleep under a short anaesthetic, but a few patients can have it done while awake if they prefer.
I am lucky to receive referrals from urologists, oncologists, GPs, and patients themselves from across the world, and I hope to have the opportunity to help you. If you are a man with prostate cancer, I want you to stay calm and just seek the best treatment. Try not to worry, just go and find a doctor you can trust to look after you and who will work tirelessly to give you the best possible results.