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Prostate cancer 'seeds' treatment hailed

Prostate cancer 'seeds' treatment hailed
Photo: Prostate cancer 'seeds' treatment hailed
A new study has found that permanently inserting tiny radioactive implants into the prostate gland has been more successful at banishing cancer.

 A prostate cancer treatment using permanently-implanted radioactive "seeds" doubles rates of five-year tumour-free survival compared with conventional high-dose radiotherapy, a study has found.

Low-dose-rate prostate Brachytherapy (LDR-PB) involves the insertion of tiny radioactive implants into the prostate gland which are not removed.

A new trial comparing the treatment with dose-escalated external beam radiotherapy found that it was much more successful at banishing cancer.

Men who underwent LDR-PB were twice as likely to be cancer-free five years later.
Scientists studied 398 men with cancer that had not spread outside the prostate gland who were judged to be at high risk of treatment failure based on standard test results.

Lead researcher Professor James Morris, from Vancouver Cancer Centre in Canada, said: "At five years follow up, we saw a large advantage in progression-free survival in the LDR-PB group.

"Although, to date, overall survival and prostate cancer-specific survival do not appear to differ between the two groups, existing trends favour LDR-PB and an overall survival advantage is likely to emerge with longer follow-up."

The findings were presented at the third European Society for Radiotherapy and Oncology forum in Barcelona, Spain.

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