RADIATION OR NOT?
ANCHOR LEAD: SHOULD MEN WHO’VE HAD THEIR PROSTATE REMOVED ALSO HAVE RADIATION? ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Radiation following surgical removal of the prostate gland in locally advanced prostate cancer seems to result in longer survival, a study in the Journal of Urology reported. But Bud Burnett, a prostate cancer expert at Johns Hopkins, says there are risks to radiation therapy that need to be considered.
BURNETT: Risks include impact on a man’s recovery of urinary control and sexual function, following having had a surgery and then radiation on top of that, those are compounded risks of those two different modalities of treatment. If it’s just the surgery alone, many men may recover these functions, but then if you come back with another whammy of treatment, I think a lot of these men could have further setbacks with these functions. :21
Burnett says men need to consider what is most important to them in making this decision- if functional recovery is most important then perhaps radiation therapy can be avoided. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.