HIFU – High Intensity Focused Ultrasound – is a safe, non-invasive form of focal therapy treatment for prostate cancer.
When diagnosed with radio-recurrent localised prostate cancer, men are usually offered invasive, traditional treatments like radical prostatectomy (surgical removal of the prostate) and radiotherapy, that affect the whole of the prostate, rather than treating the affected area.
These treatment options are not always successful (around 15% of men do not see results from radiotherapy, for example) and carry a high risk of serious side effects like erectile dysfunction and urinary incontinence, which can often be permanent and life-limiting.
Focal therapy treatment is a safe and non-invasive alternative prostate cancer treatment which targets the affected part of the prostate by using energy sources to generate extreme temperatures, leading to tumour destruction.
HIFU Salvage Therapy is a safe and highly effective alternative often accessed by men who have previously had radiotherapy for radio-recurrent, localised prostate cancer, that has not been successful (around 15% of those treated).
In fact, many men who have prostate cancer could benefit from replacing radiotherapy treatment with HIFU Salvage Therapy, or who have had radiotherapy recommended too early in their treatment cycle and would benefit from less invasive treatments as a first line of defence against the disease.
The main types of radiotherapy used for prostate cancer are External Beam Radiation Therapy (EBRT) and Brachytherapy (Internal Radiation). These treatments are, in some cases, vital in preserving life in many patients, because of the stage their prostate cancer has reached.
For other men, whose illness is not progressive, or as severe, HIFU Salvage Therapy treatment is a viable option that carries far less side effects than invasive treatments like radiotherapy, which can severely impact a man’s urinary and sexual function.
HIFU Salvage Therapy delivers treatment to the affected part of the prostate while preserving other structures like nerves and sphincter mechanisms. While the aim of the treatment is, of course, to eradicate the cancer, it’s often the case that a small amount of low risk cancer, which doesn’t pose a significant risk to the patient, can be left untreated.
In this way, HIFU Salvage Therapy is a method of oncological control which prevents progressive disease and manages prostate cancer, replacing the need for intrusive and often unsuccessful interventions.
Typical prostate cancer treatments like radical prostatectomy and radiotherapy are commonly associated with serious side effects like erectile dysfunction (being unable to get or keep an erection) and urinary incontinence (being unable to control when you urinate, often resulting in catheter use). These side effects can be severe, permanent, and distressing for both the patient and their partner.
By targeting treatments to the tumour and avoiding structures that surround the prostate gland, such as the nerves that control erections or the urinary sphincters, focal therapy treatments like HIFU Salvage Therapy seek to limit the side effects of prostate cancer treatment in properly selected patients.
This means that the treatment carries a reduced risk of both urinary incontinence and erectile dysfunction and seeks to preserve the ability to ejaculate – all by retaining as much prostate tissue as possible.
In comparison to traditional treatments, HIFU Salvage Therapy is also minimally invasive and has a short procedure time with little associated pain or discomfort, and no overnight hospital stay required. Your recovery time should be swift – you will be able to return to work and resume your usual activities within a couple of days.
If you’ve recently been diagnosed with prostate cancer, or if you’ve had radiotherapy treatment for prostate cancer that hasn’t been successful, get in touch with the experts at the Focal Therapy Clinic to find out if HIFU Salvage Therapy is a viable option for you.
Our team will be happy to talk you through this and our range of alternative, non-invasive treatment options for prostate cancer.
HIFU Salvage Therapy is a safe and highly effective treatment with an impressive roster of results:
As a group of consultants we are passionate about all prostate cancer sufferers knowing about all of their treatment options.
Based upon the details that you know and can provide to us, we will send you a Plain English personalised preliminary suitability report for HIFU Focal Therapy treatment of your prostate cancer.
You can use the information we provide in your conversations with your existing NHS and/or private treatment consultant. Should you wish to talk with us further we would be grateful to help you, but there is absolutely no obligation for you to do so whatsoever.