New Prostate Cancer Treatment Technique Offers Fewer Side Effects
Lancet Oncology points to a new prostate cancer treatment technique that uses ultrasound waves concentrated only on the tumor-affected parts of the prostate. The advantage of this novelty is that it causes few side effects compared to traditional treatment. The analysis had 42 men aged between 45 and 80 years, with tumors located from initial to aggressive grade. All were submitted to MRI. Through them, it was possible to identify regions of the organ affected by tumors. The results showed that 90% of men who had erection prior to treatment maintained the function after 12 months of research, with 14 individuals belonging to this group needing the help of medicines. In addition, the treatment did not cause urinary incontinence.
The data are staggering: 20% of men undergoing radiation therapy or prostate withdrawal surgery suffer erectile dysfunction after treatment. The standard technique still causes problems in containing urine, which affects 30% to 70% of patients.
In Brazil, the version of the ultrasound machine with a high intensity focus can only be found at AC Camargo Hospital in São Paulo. Icesp (Octavio Frias de Oliveira Institute of Cancer of the State of São Paulo) has another type of Hifu, used for myomas and bone metastases.
Prostate cancer: understand the procedures when the disease is discovered
According to urologist Ricardo La Roca, a full member of the Brazilian Society of Urology , when prostate cancer is detected, the first effort is whether the tumor is localized, advanced, or metastatic. If it is located internally, surgery, external radiotherapy or brachytherapy is used, which is also a form of radiotherapy.
When the tumor is advanced or there are already metastases, the doctor can indicate the use of hormone and opt for or not to undergo surgery or radiotherapy, depending on a number of factors.
The first treatment option is surgery, done through an incision in the abdomen, below the navel, through which the prostate is removed and with it , the tumor. The patient remains in the hospital for four or five days. External radiation therapy is performed through multiple applications, one per day, of a concentrated beam of radiation that penetrates the prostate.
It is a prolonged treatment, which lasts for six or seven weeks, but a little simpler than the surgery, since it does not involve hospitalization, nor anesthesia. Finally, the third method is brachytherapy, which consists in the placement of needles in the patient's prostate under light anesthesia, through which radioactive seeds are inserted into the gland.
Surgery is the most aggressive treatment option, because it is a complex intervention. Radiotherapy and brachytherapy are simpler procedures, although the prostate remains in the body and may present with tumor recurrence, as well as obstructive manifestations such as benign hyperplasia.
In the case of prostate cancer treatment in this state, surgery may lead to sexual impotence due to injury of the neurovascular bundles that pass to the side of the gland, as well as urinary incontinence in the first three months. The radiotherapy option does not lead to urinary incontinence, but in some cases, it may cause some deficit in sexual potency.
In prostate cancer, it is only possible to speak in cure, after 10 years without the disease. Anyone who survives 5 years is probably cured, but it takes 10 years for definitive discharge. When the tumor is inside the prostate, with surgery there is a cure between 85% and 90% of patients. If it has already left the gland, the treatment efficiency drops a lot. With the application of radiotherapy and brachytherapy, 70% of patients are cured after 10 years. With surgical treatment, the disease may reappear in 10% to 15% of cases. When this occurs, the urologist may use antitumor or hormonal medications that will control the disease for another long period if it is diagnosed in time.
Symptoms such as itching and redness in the eyes usually be considered common. After all, people who live in the big city know that pollution and dry air can often cause this kind of symptom. However, a Chinese woman identified only as Xu, when investigating an eye irritation with the doctors, discovered that she had more than 100 parasites living on her eyelashes.
In Geneva, Margaret Chan pointed out that to date, cases of microcephaly, possibly associated with virus infection in pregnant women , were identified only in Brazil and French Polynesia. According to her, data not yet detailed indicate that the same scenario may occur in Colombia, where the Zika virus outbreak began shortly after Brazil.