Athens Medical Group has been the leading provider of comprehensive, state-of-the-art care for patients with prostate bladder, kidney and testicular cancer in Europe for decades, a position strengthened further by our key cooperation with the world-renowned MD Anderson Cancer Center, Genitourinary Oncology Department, US.
AMG care team
At Athens Medical Group we offer holistic treatment of prostate cancer through the collaboration of leading scientists that constitute your personal Oncology Board. The latter is a multidisciplinary team of doctors, such as urologists, oncologists, radiation oncologists, radiologists and pathologists that all work together and combine their expertise with the sole purpose to achieve the best results for each patient.
Depending on the case, the team may also include doctors specialized in genetics and general surgery, as well as other health experts, such as, nurses specialized in working with cancer patients, dietitians and psychotherapists.
At Athens Medical Group your care team focuses on your unique case and devotes time to get to know you and understand what is important to you, so as to produce a personalized treatment and care plan that reflects your needs and goals.
Your personal physician at Athens Medical Group will consult with you to review your treatment and care options and help you feel confident in choosing the one that suits you best.
At Athens Medical Group we implement the most advanced diagnostic approach aiming to give a quick and accurate diagnosis and valid staging of the cancer, as well as a wide range of methods and innovative treatments, in accordance to the latest international therapeutic and diagnostic protocols.
Prostate cancer innovations implemented at Athens Medical Group are constantly improving our arsenal against the disease as well as the impact of the treatment on the patients’ life.
The range of treatments offered at the Athens Medical Group’s hospitals offered to patients with prostate cancer, includes chemotherapy, radiation, hormone therapy and surgery, including robotic prostatectomy, with optimal results reflecting decades of cumulative experience treating prostate cancer.
Departments that treat this condition:
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men after lung cancer. If detected in its early stages, in most cases complete healing is achieved.
However, prostate cancer does not give symptoms in the early stages and the disease progresses slowly. Increased PSA is not the only cause of prostate cancer as other benign conditions are considered as causes.
Therefore, a single elevated PSA level does not prompt a prostate biopsy, and should be verified by a second value, most commonly rectal examination findings.
Should the suspicion for prostate cancer arise, then prostate biopsy is recommended. The latter is done using a thin needle inserted into the prostate to collect tissue. Prostate biopsy may be carried out with the guidance of transrectal ultrasound.
Before biopsy repetition, multi-parametric MRI is recommended with a view to MRI-guided or MRI-transrectal ultrasound (TRUS) fusion biopsy.
Patients with intermediate- or high-risk disease should have nodal staging using computed tomography (CT), MRI, choline positron emission tomography/CT (PET/CT) or pelvic nodal dissection.
The staging for metastases should use bone scan and thoraco-abdominal CT scan or whole-body MRI or PSMA PET/CT.
Robotic radical prostatectomy using the DaVinci Si system is the golden treatment option for the management of localized and locally advanced prostate cancer. It is a minimally invasive surgical method in which all surgical operations are performed with the help of a robot handled by the surgeon from a specific console. Through the console the surgeon controls the movements of the robotic arms with much greater flexibility and stability than the human wrist.
The microscopic instruments adapted to the surgical arms and the high-resolution magnified and three-dimensional imaging of the human body organs provided by the robotic system, allow the performance of difficult and complex surgical procedures with skill and precision. During surgery, five small holes (less than 1 cm) are opened in the lower abdomen, from which the tiny laparoscopic instruments enter. Removal of the prostate is carried out bloodlessly and with absolute visual precision, ensuring good erectile function and postoperative continence.
Advantages of Robotic Prostatectomy
The Retzius-sparing technique
The innovative technique of Retzius-sparing robotic prostatectomy is applied to prostate cancer and can be combined with extensive, lymph node dissection.
The technique of Retzius-sparing radical prostatectomy presents a considerable degree of difficulty and requires great surgical experience as the surgery is done robotically through a small internal incision in the Douglas pouch. Due to its technical difficulty, this surgery can only be performed by experts specialized in urologic surgery and only by using the Da Vinci robotic system – and not in the open or laparoscopic surgery.
One of the most important problems suffered by patients after surgery for prostate cancer is urinary incontinence. The technique of Retzius-sparing radical prostatectomy offers the great advantage of a quicker and complete return of the urinary continence. At the same time, oncological results and effects on the erection mechanism remain consistent with all existing robotic prostatectomy techniques.
Focal therapy with HIFU
High-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) uses high-frequency ultrasound energy to heat and destroy cancer cells in the prostate. A beam of ultrasound energy travels into the prostate from a probe put into the rectum.
Focal therapy with HIFU is performed under general anesthesia. Focal HIFU treats a smaller area of the prostate and lasts one to two hours. It may be suitable for men who have cancer that need treating in only one area of their prostate.
Following this procedure, your surgeon will only treat the cancerous areas and a small area around them.
Radiotherapy involves the use of energy sources to destroy cancer cells. Also, it is used to shrink tumors before surgery and to relieve symptoms of cancer that has metastasized.
It may be performed through aiming energy beams to the prostate (external beam radiation) or by placing radioactive seeds inside it (brachytherapy).
It is used to stop the body from producing testosterone. Hormone therapy involves the use of medication to block hormones from affecting cancer cells or to stop the body from producing them. Another way to stop the production of testosterone is through the surgical removal of the testicles (orchiectomy)
Chemotherapy is the use of specific drugs to destroy cancer cells and is carried out as means to prevent the cancer from spreading to other parts of the body or in cases where the cancer does not respond to hormone therapy.
Immunotherapy may prove beneficial to some patients with prostate cancer. It involves the use of antibodies which activate the immune cells to fight cancer cells. Not all patients are responsive to immunotherapy.
Some of the most frequent questions asked to our doctors include:
By George Kyriakou, MD, PhD, FEBU, Urologist, Faculty Member and Trainer in IRCAD / EITS Stras...
A short guide by Dr. M. Theofanopoulou, Radiotherapy Oncologist, partner of Inter-Balkan Medic...
Filadelfeos & Kefalariou 1, 14562 Kifisia Athens, Greece