"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

Promising therapy if PSA rises after prostate cancer surgery

Many men who undergo surgical operation for prostate cancer (a radical prostatectomy) live their lives with no reoccurrence of their disease. But 20% to 40% of them will experience an increase in prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels inside 10 years of the operation. PSA must be undetectable within the blood if the prostate has been removed, so elevated levels indicate that the cancer has returned. Doctors call this biochemical relapse, and they typically treat it by giving radiation to the prostate bed, where the prostate lived before it was taken out. Known as pelvic bed radiation therapy, or PBRT, such a treatment can bring PSA back to zero for years.

now, A great study shows that PBRT is even more practical when combined with other treatments. These findings are a possible game changer for men experiencing biochemical relapse after radical prostatectomy.

Funded by the National Cancer Institute, the SPPORT Phase 3 clinical trial was conducted at roughly 300 clinical centers within the United States, Canada, and Israel. A complete of 1,797 men were enrolled between 2008 and 2015, all of whom had postsurgical PSA levels between 1 and a pair of nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL).

Subjects were randomly assigned to considered one of three groups in roughly equal numbers. Men in Group 1 received PBRT alone, while men in Group 2 received PBRT with 4 to 6 months of androgen deprivation therapy, or ADT. (Also often known as hormonal therapy, ADT blocks testosterone, a hormone, or androgen, that fuels growing prostate tumors.) Group 3 men received PBRT, ADT, and pelvic lymph node dissection. Also received radiation, where prostate cancer often goes first. It begins to spread. The investigators desired to know which of those three strategies was best in stopping the progression of the disease.

Results, unintended effects, and what's next.

According to their findings, more intensive treatment led to raised outcomes. Just over 70% of men in group 1 were freed from disease progression after five years, compared with 80.3% of men in group 2 and 87.4% of men in group 3. During the follow-up period, 104 men in group 2 in comparison with 83 men in group 3. Similar trends were seen in what number of men developed metastases, or cancer that becomes immune to hormonal therapy after it has begun to spread.

More intensive treatments even have more short-term unintended effects, especially diarrhea. But the difference in unintended effects between the three groups disappeared after three months.

The authors emphasized that longer follow-up is required to substantiate that adding ADT and pelvic node radiation to PBRT actually prolongs survival. Additionally, the study didn't evaluate a brand new treatment strategy for biochemical relapse, where doctors use recent imaging methods to search out very small metastases throughout the body that they treat with direct radiation. do