CyberKnife Changing The Way Prostate Cancer is Treated: Mark’s Story

by | Jan 16, 2019 | Prostate Cancer

Why I Chose CyberKnife Over Surgery or Other Types of Radiation Therapy & The CyberKnife Center of Miami

Life was beautiful for Mark Rubin, South Florida’s very own Dog Whisperer, Dog Walker and Photographer. He was living life to the fullest, enjoying every day until he got the news during his annual medical exam that his PSA level was elevated.

“I never worried about prostate cancer. I live an active lifestyle. Exercise regularly, don’t smoke or drink. Don’t have a family history of prostate cancer so I didn’t think about it.”

At 65-years-old with a PSA level of 5, Mark’s doctor suggested he watch and wait, but within a month it hit 6.6 and was advised to get a biopsy, which came back positive for prostate cancer.

“I’ll never forget that day November 7th, 2016. My heart sank. I didn’t know what to think or do. I felt like a zombie, it was very scary and I was in limbo because I had to go for more scans to see if the cancer had spread. I got very depressed.”

Fortunately Mark’s prostate cancer had not spread but his doctors said he had to do something or it could and create major health problems. It was decision time.

“My doctors only told me about two options. Surgery to remove the prostate gland or 42 radiation treatments done over 3 months. They explained the risks of both and I thought, I’m not doing that and wanted to check out other treatment possibilities.”

“I turned to a trusted friend who’s a medical reporter with 30 plus years experience. She’s always up-to-date with the latest clinical research, medical technology and treatments. She encouraged me to look into CyberKnife Radiation Therapy and get a second opinion to see if I was a candidate because she said it’s changing the way prostate cancer is treated. She explained it’s non-invasive, involves no surgery or downtime and only requires 5 radiation therapy sessions over 10 days, instead of 42 over several months with other types of radiation, with little, if any risk of side effects. She said if you’re a candidate, you lay down on the CyberKnife table, get your tumor treated, get up and go about your daily life while the tumor dissolves.”

“That sounded like a much better option so I called the CyberKnife Center of Miami, got an appointment right away, met with the staff and Radiation Oncologist, Dr. Mark Pomper, who’s also the medical director at CyberKnife Miami.”

“It was one of the most pleasant office visits I’ve had in my life. The entire staff is amazing. They’re overly helpful. They made me feel very comfortable and after meeting with Dr. Pomper my anxiety was greatly reduced. I felt much better because he explained to me, in a pleasant manner what I needed to do and exactly what was involved.”

“Other medical facilities I went to during this process weren’t run as professional. The staff wasn’t friendly, the wait times were long and wait rooms were overcrowded. I was just a number, but at CyberKnife Miami I felt extremely cared about. Going into that office was actually a pleasure. I looked forward to it and enjoyed seeing everyone.”

Dr. Pomper says, “At CyberKnife Miami we put patients first. They’re our priority. Mark was the perfect candidate for CyberKnife because the cancer hadn’t spread, so he could easily be treated with CyberKnife Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy (SBRT). CyberKnife typically emits 150 to 200 small x-ray beams, all penetrating the prostate from multiple angles, resulting in a higher localized dose. The dose targets the exact shape of the prostate, which means surrounding healthy tissue gets a minimal dose. Plus CyberKnife’s missile guided technology follows the tumor as the patient breathes normally, also greatly reducing the risk of side effects like incontinence or impotence.”

Mark says, “When I went for my first treatment I wasn’t scared, I felt totally relaxed and it was easier than expected. They even asked if I wanted to listen to music during the treatments, which lasted about 50 minutes each so I brought my Enya CD because I wanted relaxing music. The whole process was like a picnic.”

Dr. Pomper says, “At the CyberKnife Center of Miami we’ve successfully treated hundreds of prostate cancer patients with excellent outcomes. Study results world wide involving thousands of patients validates its effectiveness for prostate cancer and found that 98-percent of patients followed for 10 years remain cancer-free.”

Dr. Pomper goes on to say, “Why go through surgery and the risks that come with it if you don’t have to and why interrupt a patient’s life by putting them through 42 radiation treatment sessions for several months when you can do it in 5 sessions over 10 days maintaining a patients quality of life.”

Mark says, “After the third CyberKnife therapy session, I felt a little tired but it wasn’t a big deal. I still went to the gym and did my regular workout and then, as usual, I walked 10 dogs. It didn’t interrupt my life at all.”

“I think anyone with prostate cancer, looking for a cancer center or cancer hospital in South Florida should go to CyberKnife Miami and not deal with all the horrible, chaotic doctors offices, massive medical facilities, surgery or unnecessary dragged out radiation treatments.”

“I highly recommend CyberKnife because it works. I had some trouble urinating before I was treated with CyberKnife but that gradually went away and I had a little pain after my fifth and final CyberKnife treatment for about a week but Advil took care of that.”

“The biggest pain was driving from Aventura to Kendall but it was worth it. (He laughs) The good news is, I’m not depressed any more. I’m happy to have it all behind me and recommend CyberKnife 100 percent.”

“I still think it’s amazing it’s all over in 5 treatments instead of 42 with other types of radiation therapy. I’m glad my friend told me about CyberKnife and that I researched my options and didn’t just listen to what other doctors told me to do.”

“Even if you’re scared after being diagnosed with cancer, know there’s a wonderful place to go where you’ll feel relaxed, welcome and know, CyberKnife treatment works. I was treated in June of 2017 and today my PSA level is down where it should be. I don’t worry about cancer any more and am back living life to the fullest, enjoying the doggies I walk, my photography and friends.”

Dr. Pomper says, “Doctors should tell all patients who qualify about CyberKnife as a treatment option and patients should do their own research to determine what’s best for them. CyberKnife is safe and effective and changing the way prostate cancer is treated.”

To learn more talk to our prostate cancer experts at the CyberKnife Center of Miami 305-279-2900 and visit our prostate cancer website