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Sunnybrook cancer surgeon honoured as active surveillance leader

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Dr. Laurence Klotz is internationally-known for pioneering the Active Surveillance approach for men with low-risk prostate cancer.


Sunnybrook surgical oncologist Dr. Laurence Klotz, internationally-known for pioneering the Active Surveillance approach for men with low-risk prostate cancer, has been awarded the prestigious Lister Prize from the University of Toronto's Department of Surgery for his 'outstanding and continuing productivity of international stature, as evidenced by research publications, grants held, students trained and other evidence of stature of the work produced'.

He has also been recently awarded The Society of Urologic Oncology Medal for making a significant and far-reaching impact in the field of urologic oncology.

A professor in the Department of Surgery at the University of Toronto, Dr. Klotz led the multidisciplinary team at Sunnybrook, along with Drs. Richard Choo, Cyril Danjoux, Andrew Loblaw, and Danny Vesprini, who were the first to implement and report on a novel approach for patients with low risk prostate cancer based on initial expectations of management, with strategic intervention for the minority of patients who were diagnosed higher risk over time. This became known as Active Surveillance, a term coined by Dr. Klotz, with the emphasis on close monitoring and selective definitive intervention.

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Dr. Klotz, also a member of the Genitourinary Cancer Care team at Sunnybrook's Odette Cancer Centre, continues to be a strong proponent of this approach to reduce overtreatment for patients, and is widely considered to have been instrumental in its acceptance by the urological community worldwide

Findings from a 2010 Journal of Clinical Oncology-published study that he led, of 450 Canadian men with low-risk prostate cancer followed over 13 years, reported a resounding positive benefit. For patients managed with Active Surveillance with Selective Delayed Intervention, the 10-year prostate cancer actuarial survival was 97.2 per cent. Two thirds of patients avoided treatment entirely.

Active Surveillance with Selective Delayed Intervention is now a standard option for the first management of men with localized, well-differentiated prostate cancer, and is considered the treatment of choice for men with very low risk prostate cancer. The concept is increasingly being adopted in other cancer sites, particularly DCIS (ductal carcinoma in situ) for breast cancer.

This content was produced by The Globe and Mail's advertising department, in consultation with Sunnybrook. The Globe's editorial department was not involved in its creation.

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