A new noninvasive approach to prostate cancer may be a safer and less invasive treatment for the condition.
Prostate cancer is a common concern in men over 60. It is estimated that 11 percent of men (1 in 9) will be diagnosed with the disease but only 3% (1 in 39) die from the disease.
The risk is low although the risk of the disease increases as men age. According to the site WebMD, about 80% of men over the age of 80 have cancer cells in their prostate, although few actually die from a proliferation of the disease.
Traditionally, the PSA (Prostate-Specific Antigen) test has been used to diagnose the possibility of the disease, however, its reliability, especially in men 75 years or older, has been questioned due to false positives and adverse outcomes from the treatment of findings that may just be a normal part of aging. The National Cancer Institute suggests screening should begin in men over 50 years old.
Until recently, the options available for treatment may have included radiation and surgery which can leave the patient impotent and even incontinent many years later which happened to my father. Hormone therapies have also been used to slow this hormone influenced cancer.
A new type of treatment that uses MRI guided ultrasound ablation known as TULSA may be the treatment most men are likely to choose in the future. The procedure uses highly controlled sound waves which heats selected areas of the affected tissue.
This outpatient minimally invasive procedure has an 80% effectiveness rate according to a year-long study that was recently performed.
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Ultrasound destroys 80 percent of prostate cancers in one-year study
By Nick Lavars December 03, 2019
Treating prostate cancer through traditional means such as surgery or radiotherapy carries certain risks, with some patients experiencing impotence, urinary problems and bowel trouble, among other unwanted side effects. Safer and less invasive treatment options could soon be on the table, however, including a novel MRI-guided ultrasound technique that eliminated significant cancers in 80 percent of subjects in a year-long study.
The new technique is called MRI-guided transurethral ultrasound ablation (TULSA) and has been under development for a number of years. The minimally invasive technology involves a rod that enters the prostate gland via the urethra and emits highly controlled sound waves in order to heat and destroy diseased tissue, while leaving healthy tissue unharmed.