Prostate cancer treatment

There are several techniques that can be used to cure prostate cancer. These different techniques aim to treat cancer while preserving the patient’s quality of life as much as possible. Discover a selection of existing treatments to cure prostate cancer in the following article. 

Prostate cancer treatment: what to choose ?

Several types of treatment are available to the patient when prostate cancer is detected. If cancer is localized, options include therapeutic ultrasound (HIFU) to destroy the diseased cells with focused ultrasound using a probe inserted into the rectum.

Prostatectomy

Radical prostatectomy is the surgical option. Another option is radiation therapy, a method based on ionizing rays that target cancer cells in the prostate to cause their destruction. The average duration of this treatment varies between 6 and 8 weeks, with 5 sessions per week.

Brachytherapy

Brachytherapy, is an other technique used for less advanced cancers, which aims to eradicate prostate tissue by implanting a wide number of small radioactive seeds emitting continuous radiation. It should be noted that brachytherapy is performed under general anaesthesia requiring a hospital stay from 1 to 3 days.

Cryotherapy

Finally, cryotherapy aims to freeze tumour cells by inserting needles into the affected area. Carried out under general or spinal anaesthesia, this method is mainly recommended for patients who have undergone radiotherapy and are subject to the development of new cancer cells.

Hormone therapy

If the cancer is advanced and affecting other organs, hormonotherapy or hormone replacement therapy is generally recommended by practitioners. Hormone therapy aims to reduce testosterone hormone to slow the progression of the disease. Chemotherapy can also be offered to target infected tissue by injecting anti-cancer drugs and so reduce tumour growth and related pain. Side effects of this prostate cancer treatment include vomiting, diarrhea, hair loss and loss of appetite.

Finally, for advanced cancers, radiotherapy can also relieve symptoms and contain the spread of the disease.

HIFU treatment benefits to cure localized prostate cancer

Among the various prostate cancer treatments listed above, HIFU is emerging as one of the less invasive (after active surveillance) but effective methods for treating localized prostate cancer.

This medical technique consists of destroying the tumour cells contained in the prostate by heat through the focusing of therapeutic ultrasound. HIFU is non-invasive; it requires no incision and is radiation-free. Only patients with localized stage T1 or T2 cancer can be treated with HIFU (Gleason score also must be less than or equal to 7). The 10-year survival rate is between 92% and 99%. This medical technique allows the patient to maintain his quality of life by reducing the side effects associated with conventional radical treatments (incontinence and erectile dysfunction).