What are the potential benefits of brachytherapy?
Brachytherapy is a very effective and highly convenient treatment for prostate cancer, with minimized side effects.
Brachytherapy has been used by doctors to successfully treat prostate cancer for many decades.1 Today, modern state-of-the-art technologies are used to help healthcare professionals deliver brachytherapy with a high level of precision.
Brachytherapy is recognized as a standard treatment alongside surgery and external beam radiotherapy (EBRT).2
Benefits of brachytherapy include:
- Effective as a cure: there are many studies that show patients continue to remain free of cancer after treatment with brachytherapy.3-5 Cure rates (measured by monitoring patients' PSA levels) have been shown to be at least equivalent to external beam radiation therapy (EBRT) and surgery.4-6
- Minimized side effects: The accurate and targeted nature of both low dose rate (LDR) and high dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy reduces the risk of side effects (see the side effects section).7
- Minimally invasive: Avoids the need for extensive surgery.1
- Shorter treatment times and shorter recovery periods: brachytherapy is usually given on an outpatient basis and completed in a couple of days.7 Patients are usually able to get back to their normal activities within a week.
Other patients agree!
In a recent study, given the choice, 81% of patients who had brachytherapy treatment for prostate cancer said they would choose to have the same procedure again.8
1. Gupta VK. J Medical Physics 1995;20(2):31-5.
2. Fatyga M, Williamson JF, Dogan N, et al. Med Phys 2009;36(9):3995-4006.
3. Potter R. Radiother Oncol 2009;91(2):141-6.
4. Kupelian PA, Potters L, Khuntia D, et al. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 2004;58(1):25-33.
5. Pickles T, Keyes M, Morris WJ. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 2010;76(1):43-9.
6. Grimm P. et al. BJU Int 2012 ;109 (Suppl 1): 22-29
7. Grills IS, Martinez AA, Hollander M, et al. J Urol 2004;171(3):1098-104.
8. Hall JD, Boyd JC, Lippert MC, et al. Urology 2003;61(2)402-7.