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Curr Urol Rep. 2003 Jun;4(3):216-20.

Alternative therapies for localized prostate cancer.

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  • 1Department of Urology, Jeroen Bosch Hospital, PO Box 90153, 5200 ME's-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands.


Prostate cancer is the leading malignancy in men; an increase in detected localized prostate cancers is expected in the years to come. Radical prostatectomy, although effective, is associated with a considerable morbidity. The aim of minimal invasive alternative treatment options should be equal efficacy, but a decrease in side effects. Cryosurgical ablation of the prostate, brachytherapy, high-intensity focused ultrasound, and radiofrequency interstitial tumor ablation were evaluated after a literature review from a MEDLINE search (1966-2002). When compared with treatments in the 1960s and 1970s, increased safety is observed in all of the alternative treatments available today. Sophisticated technology, including the latest ultrasonography devices for exact planning and monitoring of treatment, contributes largely to this safety. Five-year results of cryosurgical ablation of the prostate show a prostate-specific antigen lower than 1 ng/mL in 60% of the cases; in the third generation, there are no long-term data available on cryosurgical ablation of the prostate. Recent outcome data of brachytherapy come close to results of radical prostatectomy series. Brachytherapy is the only true alternative at this point in time. High-intensity focused ultrasound and radiofrequency interstitial tumor ablation are promising new technologies that have proven to be able to induce extensive necrosis; however, follow-up is too short to determine their definite places in the treatment of prostate cancer.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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