'Watchful waiting' is one option recommended for men with low-risk prostate cancer who have early-stage, slow-growing prostate cancer, or who have health conditions that increase the risks of surgery. The odds are they will die of some other cause before their cancer causes poor health.
Doctors may also recommend treatment with surgery, radiotherapy, hormone therapy, or a combination of treatments, depending on the type of prostate cancer. Today's treatments are markedly improved, and less likely to cause major side effects. So, when recommended, the benefits of treatment usually outweigh the risks.