Researchers from the Mayo Clinic recently announced results at the American Urological Association (AUA) Annual Meeting from a long-term study that indicates that surgery can improve life expectancy for men with advanced prostate cancer. Their study shows that 80% of men who have advanced prostate cancer and still choose to have surgery survive for at least 20 years post surgery.

These findings indicate that men with advanced prostate cancer (cT3) remain good candidates for a radical prostatectomy (surgery) despite the fact that their prostate cancer might have spread beyond the prostate gland. Up to this time most men diagnosed with cT3 prostate cancer were offered radiation and/or hormone treatment, but rarely a radical prostatectomy.

“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.”

In comparison the survival rate for cT3 diagnoses at 20 years compares to 90 percent for cT2, or cancer confined to the prostate gland.

This long-term follow-up of men who underwent surgery between 1987 and 1997 is an important advance in understanding the survival outcomes for men with cT3 disease. The study sample