For men considering what to do about their diagnosis of prostate cancer, the critical issues are:
- The ability of the treatment to eliminate prostate cancer from their lives
- The level of invasiveness of the treatment
- The likely side effects of the treatment
- How much the treatment itself will impact their quality of life
For many of these men, Focal Therapy is a realistic option – offering curative, minimally invasive treatment – that should be considered.
Treatments for Prostate Cancer
Conventionally, men with early or intermediate stage prostate cancer are offered the option to follow the Active Surveillance protocol or to have radical treatments such as or Radical Prostatectomy or Hormone / Radiotherapy treatments.
Active Surveillance is offered to men whose cancer is early stage, confined within the prostate gland and not at risk of escaping the prostate gland within the next 24 months. It is offered to men to postpone the impact of radical surgery or radiotherapy treatments.
For about 50% of men, this can allow a delay before having radical treatment of about 5 years, during which time they can enjoy a good quality of life although some men find constant monitoring of their condition to be stressful.
In the private sector, Focal Therapy is an alternative treatment for suitable patients and offers a middle way between Active Surveillance and the radical treatments.
Focal Therapy treats the area of the prostate gland that contains cancer and leaves the healthy tissue intact. This approach, which has a similar cancer cure rate over an 8 year period as Radical Prostatectomy or Radiotherapy, has the merit of being non-invasive and does not damage the erectile nerves or the urethra, thus minimising the risk of urinary incontinence or erectile dysfunction.
“Focal Therapy has emerged somewhere in the middle of Active Surveillance and more radical treatment. There is an opportunity to use something less invasive that still gets the advantages of treatment – avoiding metastatic disease, avoiding hormone therapy, avoiding death from prostate cancer”
Mr Tim Dudderidge, Urological Consultant at University Hospital, Southampton
Radical Prostatectomy & Hormone / Radiotherapy
In general, on the NHS, the treatment options of Radical Prostatectomy (surgical removal of the prostate gland) or Hormone / Radiotherapy treatments are offered to patients with intermediate stage prostate cancer and to those men progressing from the Active Surveillance protocol.
These treatments are effective at treating cancer; however, they are invasive and have implications for urinary continence and erectile function.
As a group of consultants we are passionate about prostate cancer sufferers knowing about all of their treatment options.
We know that settling on the right treatment is a big decision for you. If you would like to speak to one of our friendly and knowledgeable patient advocates about your diagnosis and the HIFU Focal Therapy treatment option then please do not hesitate to get in touch today.
All enquiries to The Focal Therapy Clinic are confidential, and we are delighted to offer our advice and support with no obligation.