For prostate cancer patients with small, lower-grade tumors, expectant management with delayed surgical intervention (active surveillance) is a rarely used therapeutic option because the opportunity for cure may be lost. We compared outcomes of 38 patients with small, lower-grade prostate cancer in an expectant management program who underwent delayed surgical intervention at a median of 26.5 months (95% confidence interval [CI] = 17 to 32 months; range = 12.0-73.0 months) after diagnosis with 150 similar patients who underwent immediate surgical intervention at a median of 3.0 months (95% CI = 2 to 4 months; range = 1.0-9.0 months) after diagnosis. Noncurable cancer was defined as adverse pathology associated with a less than 75% chance of remaining disease-free for 10 years after surgery. Noncurable cancer was diagnosed in nine (23%) of the 38 patients in the delayed intervention cohort and in 24 (16%) of the 150 men in the immediate intervention group. After adjusting for age and prostate-specific antigen (PSA) density (i.e., PSA value divided by prostate volume) in a Mantel-Haenszel analysis, the risks of noncurable cancer associated with delayed and immediate intervention did not differ statistically significantly (relative risk = 1.08, 95% CI = 0.55 to 2.12; P = .819, two-sided Cochran-Mantel-Haenszel statistic). Age, PSA, and PSA density were all statistically significantly associated with the risk of noncurable cancer P = .030, .013, and .008, respectively; two-sided chi-square test). Thus, delayed prostate cancer surgery for patients with small, lower-grade prostate cancers does not appear to compromise curability.