What about quality of life in prostate cancer management?
Formerly considered to be incompatible with cancer, therapeutic advances and improvement in cancer survival have recently placed quality of life at the heart of patients’ decision about prostate cancer management. Quality of life is akin to a person’s judgment on his life and his psychic equilibrium, it is therefore a very subjective concept that makes its assessment difficult. Therapeutic advances, the willingness to involve patients in decisions about themselves, or rationalization of healthcare expenditure may explain why health-related measures of quality of life have been developed in recent years alongside morbidity and mortality indices.
HIFU prostate cancer treatment preserves quality of life
Prostate cancer treatments can alter patient’s quality of life in terms of pelvic comfort, urinary continence, sexuality and values. Today’s oncology is not only about curing or prolonging life: it also aims to reduce the comorbidities of the disease and the side effectsof treatments, to fight against possible sequelaes. By strongly decreasing side effects associated with the treatment of localized prostate cancer (urinary and erectile dysfunction are the two main ones), non-invasive high-intensity focused ultrasound therapy (HIFU) preserves the patient’s quality of life. HIFU treatment is also a perfect alternative between active monitoring and radical treatment of cancer by surgery or radiotherapy. By treating cancer effectively in a minimally invasive manner, it preserves the quality of life of patients by removing the psychological stress that active surveillance can represent for the patient.