What is Brachytherapy?
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Prostate Cancer it is important to understand the various treatments available.
Men with early stage prostate cancer have several treatment options available to them including, watchful waiting, surgery, and radiation therapy. It is now understood that External Radiation, Radical Prostatectomy and Radioactive Implants (Brachytherapy) provide the same cure rates in early stage prostate cancer. Discussing these options with your medical team and others who may have experienced similar treatments will be helpful in coming to a treatment decision that is best for you.
This website details the advantages of permanent seed brachytherapy enhanced by computerized technologies.
Brachytherapy is a form of radiation therapy where small radioactive seeds about the size of a grain of rice, are implanted into the prostate. Permanent seed brachytherapy has the same PSA control rate as radical prostate surgery and external beam radiation but with a lower complication rate (urine leakage and sexual dysfunction) and a much faster recovery time. Seed implant is an outpatient procedure that, unlike surgery, does not require an overnight hospital stay and rarely requires the home use of a urinary catheter.
Dr. Stephen Doggett, a fellowship trained Radiation Oncologist, has focused his practice in the area of permanent seed brachytherapy. To learn more about the pioneering advances developed by Dr. Doggett and colleagues click here to learn more.
Introduction to Prostate Brachytherapy Enhanced by Computerized Technology
|Active Surveillance||Radical Prostatectomy||Brachytherapy||IMRT|
|Potential Comparative Advantages||~40% never show clinical progression requiring active treatment.||Single procedure. Low risk of bowel side effects.||Single procedure. Minimally invasive. Lower risks of short term incontinence or impotence than surgery.||Non-invasive. Lower risks of short term incontinence or impotence than surgery.|
|Potential Comparative Disadvantages||Risk of "missed" aggressive tumors or tumor progression. Monitoring and biopsies required.||Surgical complications. Higher rates of short term incontinence and impotence.||Risk of short-term urinary obstruction. (Can be easily treated prior to brachytherapy with drugs or minor surgery.)||Higher (~45) number of visits for treatment. Higher risk of bowel side effects (procititis).|
|May Not Be Best For||Extended life expectancy (> 20 years). High anxiety. High potential for failure to follow-up.||Higher surgical risks. Higher concern for sexual function and urinary continence.||Large prostate. History of urinary obstruction. (Can be easily treated prior to brachytherapy with drugs, hormones or minor surgery.)||Higher concern for normal bowel function.|
|Relative Cost to Insurers||Lower||Average||Average||Higher|