Barcelona, Spain: Radiotherapy given in high doses over a shorter period of time is safe and effective for prostate cancer patients, according to research presented at the ESTRO 37 conference today.
The treatment, called ultrahypofractionated radiotherapy, involves hospital treatment every other day for two and half weeks, compared to every week day for eight weeks for standard radiotherapy.
Researchers say this method of giving radiotherapy saves time for patients. It also frees up radiotherapy equipment, saving money and benefiting other patients on the waiting list for treatment.
The study was presented by Professor Anders Widmark, a senior consultant based in the department of radiation sciences and cancer centre at Umeå University, Sweden.
He said: “We already know that radiotherapy can destroy cancer cells in the prostate and that it has advantages over surgery and hormone therapy because it is less likely to cause impotence or incontinence. However, radiotherapy requires expensive specialist equipment and patients can end up on a waiting list for treatment.
“Ultrahypofractionated radiotherapy offers a number of practical benefits to patients as well as time and cost-savings for hospitals, so we wanted to test if it is as safe and effective as standard radiotherapy.”
The researchers conducted
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