Areas of Expertise
Brachytherapy – HDR
Study Shows Cure Rates Better or Equal to Prostatectomy. Dr. Perlow has been performing Brachytherapy for over ten years with excellent results.
The newest and most advanced type of Brachytherapy is high dose rate brachytherapy. Instead of placing radioactive seeds in the prostate a single high intensity radioactive source is delivered to the interior of the prostate over a short period of time, typically 10-15 minutes. The procedure utilizes a robot like machine to deliver the radiation. With this procedure there is no persistent radioactivity or foreign particles left in the prostate. Studies suggest that patients undergoing high dose rate brachytherapy experience less side effects and symptoms than with conventional seed brachytherapy.
Conventional brachytherapy is the implantation of small radioactive pellets (seeds). Radiation delivered by both types of brachytherapy radiation prevents the cancer cells from dividing for weeks or months.
For the study mentioned above, 1177 (brachytherapy) and 281 (prostatectomy) patients had sufficient data to be included in the review. Patients were classified as high risk, intermediate risk, and low risk. The authors found that the cure rate for brachytherapy in high-risk patients was 88 percent versus 43 percent for prostatectomy; for intermediate-risk patients, the cure rate was 89 percent versus 58 percent, respectively. Low-risk patients had similar cure rates with both procedures (99 percent versus 97 percent). Cure rate means that cancer did not recur over a specified period of time, in this case 12 years.
Based on their findings, the authors recommend that physicians offer both brachytherapy and prostatectomy as treatment options for men with organ-confined prostate cancer.
Source:Sharkey J, Cantor A, Solc Z, et al. 2005. 103Pd brachytherapy versus radical prostatectomy in patients with clinically localized prostate cancer: a 12-year experience from a single group practice. Brachytherapy 4:34-44.