By MaleProstateHealth • November 29, 2016 • Comments Off on Radiation Therapy for Prostate Cancer | Memorial Sloan Kettering
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The outcomes for prostate cancer treatment with external beam radiation or radioactive seed implants are comparable, although each approach has different effects on a patient's quality of life. If you need radiation therapy for prostate cancer, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center recommends that you discuss both options with your doctor and weigh the pros and cons of each. In this video, Michael Zelefsky, MD, explains some factors to consider when deciding which treatment to pursue.
Dr. Zelefsky, tell me about radiation therapy because that seems to be the obvious choice versus surgery.
Well, radiation therapy, as we mentioned, comes in two forms: Its external beam radiation therapy, with sophisticated targeting technique, known as IGRT (Image Guided Radiation Therapy) and seed implants. Usually, each one could be a therapy that is very effective in the earlier stages of prostate cancer.
For more aggressive prostate cancers, we sometimes combine these two treatments, the external radiation plus the seed implant. Sometimes when it’s a little more aggressive, we may consider adding hormonal therapy together to achieve the best control of the prostate cancer.
What’s the rational for adding hormonal therapy to radiation treatments?
Based on a number of studies, it appears that when it’s more aggressive, you need a little more help in eradicating the disease, such as higher radiation doses.
There is evidence to suggest that when using hormones together with radiation, the hormones seem to sensitize the radiation and make it more effective in terms of its ability to kill cells.
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