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Can Radiation Make a Difference in Locally Advanced Prostate Cancer?

Men who are diagnosed with more advanced cases of prostate cancer may find their treatment options limited. One choice, however, can produce positive results while improving outcomes. Radiation therapy can and does play a very big role in the treatment of more advanced cases of this disease. When used in conjunction with other therapies, such as androgen-deprivation therapy, the outcomes can be especially positive even in cases that are considered non-curable.

A recent study, in fact, looked at the benefits of combining radiation therapy and androgen-deprivation therapy more quickly after diagnosis of prostate-specific antigen relapse prostate cancer or non-curable prostate cancer. The overall survival rate for men who were treated with both therapies without a lag in introduction of androgen deprivation therapy was very promising. At a median follow-up of about 5 years, men who received immediate intervention with both therapies had a 91 percent survival rate compared with an 86 percent survival rate for men who received delayed treatments with androgen following radiation.

Radiation therapy is considered a viable treatment option in many forms of prostate cancer. This therapy works by effectively killing off prostate cancer cells through an irradiation process. The introduction of androgen-deprivation therapy adds a boost by cutting cancer cells off from their main fuel source. In more advances cases of the disease, the one-two punch, so to say, can help prolong life even when a cure is not possible.

Men who are diagnosed with prostate cancer may find radiation is a recommended treatment in their case. A number of advancements have occurred in radiation over the past few decades making this treatment option more effective while also reducing side effect risks in many cases. Even so, men are urged to talk to their doctors about all treatment options so they can carefully weigh potential benefits against possible risks.