Different Prostate Cancer Radiation Therapies
Radiation therapy, also known as radiotherapy, is the most often prescribed prostate cancer treatment used to kill off cancerous cells with high energy radiation beams. Although advanced techniques are used in radiotherapy, still, some healthy body cells get killed during the treatment process. Loss of healthy cells may result in severe side effects. For the treatment of prostate cancer, two types of radiation therapy are utilized. These prostate cancer radiation therapies are External Radiation Therapy (XRT) and Brachytherapy.
XRT (External Radiation Therapy): This is a kind of radiation recommended when the cancerous tumor has penetrated the prostate capsule and spread to the surrounding tissues. The prostate cancer radiation therapy involves the projection of high energy X-rays into the prostate tissue. This type of radiation kills the cancer cells and also shrinks the tumors.
Stereotactic radio surgery is yet another technique used to treat prostate cancer at some treatment centers. This involves the use of a computer program to find out the precise size, shape and location of the tumor. High concentrated radiation beams from various positions and angles are delivered by a robotic arm. These beams intersect at the cancerous tumor and do not cause damage to any healthy tissues.
Erectile dysfunction (in older men), diarrhea, and discomfort during urination are some of the side effects of this treatment.
Brachytherapy: Brachytherapy is a kind of prostate cancer radiation therapy that involves the implantation of radioactive tiny capsules into the prostate gland. As these seeds emit rays, the malignant tumor gets destroyed. Patients that have prostate cancer that is localized and confined to only the prostate gland are the ones suitable for this type of prostate cancer radiation therapy.
A good prostate cancer radiation therapy will eradicate the cancer leaving the tissues and organs that surround it completely undamaged or affected in anyway.