Prostate cancer treated in early stages has a high survival rate. Whether by radical prostectomy, radioactive seed implant or external beam radiation therapy, most treatments are succuessful if the cancer is caught early.
More advanced or aggressive prostate cancer is a whole different story. Where the other scenario is all about beating the cancer, the only treatment for advance prostate cancer is hormone therapy and the goal is to slow it down. Hormone therapy is aimed at lowering the level of testosterone. One of the downsides to hormonal therapy has been the potential for increasing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Now a new treatment protocol calling for a short period of hormone therapy in conjunction with radiation therapy is showing promise both in keeping the cancer at bay and not having cardiovascular side effects. Other side effects such as bone loss, osteoporosis, depression are also lessened.
The thrust of this new treatment protocol, as it was with long term hormone treatment, is to avoid the spread and potential bone metastasis. Once prostate cancer has metastasized to the bone, there is usually very little than can be done. This new protocol has been shown to delay metastasis for over 8 years.
Bottom line. From a life insurance standpoint, a high stage, high grade prostate cancer is really uninsurable with traditional life insurance. The truth is that the cancer is never cured and the treatment never ends. That doesn’t alter the fact that this breakthrough is going to change the quality of life and potentially give more years to many who weren’t very hopeful about either of those things.