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Increased radiation significantly shortens treatment time
Prostate cancer is a dangerous condition that often leads to death. Researchers have now found that men with prostate cancer can benefit from radical radiation therapy that only lasts five days instead of the usual 37 days.
In their current investigation, scientists from the Royal Marsden Hospital and the Institute of Cancer Research in London found that radical radiation therapy could help men with prostate cancer to fight the disease effectively and quickly. The advantage of this treatment is that it only lasts five days instead of the usual 37 days.
Treating Prostate Cancer With Only Five Sessions?
If men with prostate cancer get treatment, they currently have to stay in a hospital from Monday to Friday every week for almost two months, the experts say. However, physicians are currently conducting a large-scale study to complete a stronger therapy in just five daily sessions.
Study included 1,800 participants
Such a therapy could save millions of healthcare workers, and it is simply much more pleasant for the men affected, the authors say. The experts assume that such a treatment can also reduce the side effects. The new study includes a total of 1,800 patients. Participants received either surgery or radiation therapy that lasted five, 20, or 37 days.
NHS England is currently advising 20 days of treatment
The NHS England advised in November that 20-day treatment should be used as the standard procedure. The current study aims to determine whether the five-day course is as effective in combating prostate cancer as the other treatment options. For this purpose, the participating men are medically monitored for a period of five years.
How many cases of prostate cancer are there in Germany each year?
More than 50,000 new cases of prostate cancer are diagnosed in Germany every year. According to the cancer information service of the German Cancer Research Center, there were 57,400 new cases in 2014. In the same year, 13,700 deaths were found among those affected.
It is important to start treatment early
Cancer therapy for prostate cancer is particularly effective if it takes place at an early stage of the disease. In such a case, the treatment is able to permanently eliminate about 60 percent of the tumors. However, such treatment can lead to long-term side effects such as impotence, bowel problems and even bladder cancer, the doctors explain.
Irradiation is more accurate and stronger
The study involves increasing the radiation power during treatment to more than double the original dose, the scientists report. So-called MRI scanning allows radiologists to focus increased radiation on the core of the cancer instead of simply irradiating the entire prostate.
The results are very gratifying
If the effectiveness of the treatment can be maintained, it is also more pleasant for the person concerned and leads to fewer side effects, it is really very gratifying, according to the conclusion of Professor David Dearnaley from the Institute of Cancer Research. (as)