Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Highly targeted radiation technique minimizes side effects of prostate cancer treatment, study finds

Date:
October 28, 2010
Source:
American Society for Radiation Oncology
Summary:
Men with prostate cancer treated with a specialized type of radiation called intensity modulated radiation therapy have fewer gastrointestinal complications compared to patients treated with conventional three-dimensional conformal radiotherapy, according to a new study.

Men with prostate cancer treated with a specialized type of radiation called intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) have fewer gastrointestinal complications compared to patients treated with conventional three-dimensional conformal radiotherapy (3D-CRT), according to a study to be presented Nov. 1, 2010, at the 52nd Annual Meeting of the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO).

"With survivors living many years after treatment, it is very important to minimize gastrointestinal and urinary side effects to allow patients to live a full life after treatment," Justin Bekelman, M.D., lead author of the study and a radiation oncologist at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, said. "We specifically looked at IMRT, given its potential to minimize radiation side effects and its higher cost compared to other treatments. Our study shows there is a benefit for men with prostate cancer to receive IMRT over conventional treatment in terms of gastrointestinal side effects. But there is no difference between the two treatments in terms of urinary side effects."

The prostate gland is near both the rectum and the bladder, so doctors must be very careful to spare these healthy tissues to avoid complications when attacking the cancer.

Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in American men, with more than 185,000 men diagnosed with the disease each year. Fortunately, the disease is very manageable and often curable, with 98 percent of patients living at least five years after their diagnosis.

IMRT and 3D-CRT are special types of external beam radiation therapy where radiation is directed through the skin to the cancer and the immediate surrounding area to destroy the tumor and any stray cancer cells. Treatments are painless, much like receiving an X-ray.

Policymakers and clinicians have highlighted the need for comparative studies of prostate cancer treatments. However, there is little evidence comparing IMRT to conventional radiation therapy. Three-dimensional conformal radiation therapy, or 3D-CRT, uses computers and special imaging techniques such as CT, MR or PET scans to show the size, shape and location of the tumor and surrounding organs. Because the radiation beams are very precisely directed, nearby normal tissue receives less radiation.

Intensity modulated radiation therapy, or IMRT, is a specialized form of 3D-CRT that better shapes the radiation to the tumor. Using IMRT, it may be possible to further limit the amount of radiation received by healthy tissue near the tumor.

This study used the Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER)-Medicare database to compare the gastrointestinal and urinary complications of men 65 years or older with prostate cancer within two years of treatment with IMRT or 3D-CRT. The researchers specifically examined common gastrointestinal side effects like inflammation of the rectum lining (proctitis) and rectal bleeding, along with the urinary side effects like inflammation of the bladder tissue (cystitis) and blood in the urine (hematuria).

The study showed that IMRT was associated with a modest reduction in gastrointestinal complications associated with radiation, including proctitis and rectal bleeding. Urinary complications, such as cystitis and hematuria, did not significantly differ between the groups.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Society for Radiation Oncology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Society for Radiation Oncology. "Highly targeted radiation technique minimizes side effects of prostate cancer treatment, study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 October 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101025133757.htm>.
American Society for Radiation Oncology. (2010, October 28). Highly targeted radiation technique minimizes side effects of prostate cancer treatment, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101025133757.htm
American Society for Radiation Oncology. "Highly targeted radiation technique minimizes side effects of prostate cancer treatment, study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101025133757.htm (accessed August 28, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) State health officials say testing has confirmed the presence of a killer amoeba in a water system serving three St. John the Baptist Parish towns. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Who Could Be Burnt by WHO's E-Cigs Move?

Who Could Be Burnt by WHO's E-Cigs Move?

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 28, 2014) The World Health Organisation has called for the regulation of electronic cigarettes as both tobacco and medical products. Ciara Lee looks at the impact of the move on the tobacco industry. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Director On Ebola Outbreak: 'It's Worse Than I Feared'

CDC Director On Ebola Outbreak: 'It's Worse Than I Feared'

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) CDC director Tom Frieden says the Ebola outbreak is even worse than he feared. But he also said there's still hope to contain it. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
UN: Ebola Cases Could Eventually Reach 20,000

UN: Ebola Cases Could Eventually Reach 20,000

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) The Ebola outbreak in West Africa eventually could exceed 20,000 cases, more than six times as many as are known now, the World Health Organization said as the US announced plans to test an experimental Ebola vaccine. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins