Over a period of five years, Chris Lockheed’s PSA numbers had been going up. Then, a biopsy revealed that he had two tumors on his prostate. Chris, 68, started doing research into what kind of options for treatment were available to him. When a radiation specialist in Rohnert Park told him about Dr. Michael Lazar and the HIFU procedure, he did more homework. He found that Dr. Lazar had done hundreds of these procedures in Puerto Vallarta, and the treatment was given FDA approval for use in the U.S. in 2015.
What is HIFU?
HIFU is an FDA approved precise and targeted therapy that reduces the risk of complications caused by surgery and radiation. HIFU uses ultrasound energy, or sound waves, to heat and destroy specifically targeted areas of tissue. During HIFU, the sound waves pass through healthy tissue without causing damage. However, at the focal point of the sound waves (like a magnifying glass focusing the rays of the sun to burn a leaf), the tissue temperature is raised to 90 degrees Celsius, destroying the targeted tissue.
“Men treated with HIFU wake up and go home without pain or bleeding. They are able to travel the same day, drive the next day, and resume normal activities within a few days. Those with office based jobs can go back to work the next day,” explains Dr. Michael Lazar, urologist and prostate cancer specialist. “A catheter is left in for 5 days to 3 weeks, depending on how much of the gland is treated and/or the degree of swelling.”
Focal Therapy is not associated with incontinence, and erectile dysfunction is just under 10%. Sparing of the urethra avoids scar tissue formation which, when present, may diminish the urinary stream. The eventual need for additional therapy is now under 10%.
Confidence for procedure and doctor
“Dr. Lazar explained everything, and he’s done over 300 of the procedures, that’s why I went to him. I felt very confident. I looked at all of the choices and said, ‘this is for me’.”
Chris, who lives in Santa Rosa, drove down to the San Francisco Surgery Center for the three-hour outpatient procedure. Afterwards, feeling no side effects, Chris and his ride got some take-out food and drove home. Chris also mentioned he needed no pain medication. The only side effect he had was the catheter, which was “a little irritating.”
Chris is a pet supplies representative, and his travels take him from Marin to Eureka. He is also a professional drummer who has recorded with Epic, CBS/Columbia, Capitol, Universal, and independent labels. “To be careful, I took a week off from work, but I was still active.” A week after the procedure, he went back to Dr. Lazar to have the catheter taken out.
“There was no leaking urine issues or erectile dysfunction, everything was fine. After getting the catheter out, everything was totally normal.” A week after the procedure Chris was back at work, drumming on the weekend, and working in the yard.
Chris is so satisfied with the results he has been recommending Dr. Lazar and the HIFU procedure to other men as an option to prostate surgery.
HIFU for everyone
“Insurance coverage for HIFU is just now beginning to happen. A big help is the issuance of a facility billing code by Medicare which will save Medicare patients about $7,000, and help to mainstream HIFU. Hopefully conventional insurance companies will follow suit in the near future. This therapy should not be available only to those who can afford it,” says Dr. Lazar
HIFU has many proven advantages over traditional treatment modalities for prostate disease. Call (707) 546-5553 to make an appointment with Dr. Lazar. Visit our website: www.californiahifu.com#hopeforprostatecancer #HIFU #DrLazar #cancertreatment