ANCHOR LEAD: WHICH MEN BENEFIT FROM RADIATION FOR PROSTATE CANCER AFTER SURGERY? ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
While not as dramatic as surgery nor as fraught with side effects as chemotherapy, radiation therapy for cancer does have consequences, so knowing up front who will benefit would be great. Bruce Trock and colleagues at Johns Hopkins have identified one group of men treated for prostate cancer who clearly do benefit from radiation.
TROCK: Can we identify which patients get the best benefit from it, because probably it doesn’t work in everybody. Some of these patients at the time of recurrence are going to have tumor that’s already spread beyond where the radiation can get it. And here’s where we got the big surprise: the guys who got the most benefit relative to no further treatment were the guys whose tumors were growing the fastest. :27
Trock says faster tumors can be identified with a rapidly increasing prostate specific antigen or PSA test. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.