Radiation Therapy vs Surgery For Prostate Cancer

Read about radiation therapy vs surgery for prostate cancer explanation to narrow down the choices to two – surgical removal of the prostate or radiation therapy.

Radiation therapy for prostate cancer after surgery is normally conducted if PSA rises. Radiation therapy uses high-energy rays or particles to kill cancer cells. Radiation may be used:

1. As the beginning treatment for low-grade cancer which is just in the prostate gland. Curing rates for men with these types of cancers are about the same as those for men getting radical prostatectomy.
2. As part of the foremost treatment (along with hormone therapy) for cancers that have developed outside of the prostate gland and into nearby tissues.
3. If the cancer isn't got rid of completely or recurs in the area after surgery for prostate cancer.
4. If the cancer has advances, to subdue the size of the cancer and to allow easing from present and possible future symptoms.

The 2 main types of radiation therapy for prostate cancer are external beam radiation and brachytherapy (internal radiation). Both seem to be good methods of treating prostate cancer, although there is more long-term information about the results with external beam radiation.

The advantage of radiation therapy vs surgery for prostate cancer is that it is simple to go through than surgery.  Even with robotic technology, its small surgical incision are not as little as the openings created by a few dozen needles inserted into the skin behind the scrotum when radiation seeds are embedded.  General recovery from robotic prostatectomy is usually 2-3 weeks, whereas recovery from radioactive seed implantation is 1-2 days.  Many patients who take the radiation route will likewise have daily external beam therapy for 6-7 weeks.

The prostate cancer radiotherapy side effects involves difficultness in emptying the bladder.  In severe cases, patients can feel debilitating frequent urination (including countless disturbances of sleep), reduced urinary flow, and hurting with urination.  The urinary complications of radiation therapy occur in a small minority of patients on a lasting basis, but these conditions can be much harder to manage than the infrequent urinary issues related with prostate removal.  Moreover, in those patients who already have frequent urination (day or night) or reduced urinary flow, the likeliness of long-lasting symptoms following radiation therapy rises dramatically.   In fact, patients with these pre-existent symptoms would majority notice an improvement after prostate removal.

The advantage of surgery vs. radiation for treatment of prostate cancer is the data learned that is not available through other treatment methods.  Once the prostate is got rid of, it can be fully examined to ascertain the extent, location, and grade of the disease within the prostate and seminal vesicles and lymph nodes if required.  More importantly, the ability to supervise a patient for potential recurrence is dramatically raised.  When the prostate is took away, the PSA blood test should become undetectable in 6 weeks if all the cancer cells have been eliminated with success. 

Radiation Therapy vs Surgery For Prostate Cancer
Radiation Therapy vs Surgery For Prostate Cancer

The prostate cancer side effects after surgery is the small possibleness of long-lasting bladder control problems.  For those below age 65, less than 5% will have any significant post-operative bladder problems. The risk of incontinence following radiation is 1-2%.

Several factors come in when deciding the best therapy for treating prostate cancer. These include pre-existent symptoms, PSA level, extent/volume of disease, age, Gleason grade and emotional factors.  Whether choosing radiation therapy vs surgery for prostate cancer, extensive experience of the treating doctor is crucial in order to maximise a effective outcome.