A new study suggests that there is a possible treatment for prostate cancer that will cure nine out of ten men without causing any debilitating side effects in those suffering from the disease. The treatment involves heating tumours that have formed in the prostrate with a very targeted ultrasound light allowing men to be treated as outpatients.
This would also avoid an overnight stay for men that need prostate cancer treatment and possibly many of the side effects such as impotence that are common results of current prostate cancer treatment.
The high intensity focused ultrasound, referred to as HIFU for short, and has been found to offer almost a perfect outcome in the patients that it has been tested on with nine out of ten cases still cancer free after 12 months. The same amount of patients felt no side effects as a result of the laser treatment.
Radiotherapy or other traditional surgical methods have only been found to be effective in about half of the cases that they are used on. Experts state that the positive results of the HIFU studies is encouraging and that they may lead to an eventual shift in the way that prostate cancer is treated.
HIFU proponents hope that large scale trials can now begin on the new cancer treatment so that within five years the HIFU alternative could be offered by the NHS. Next week the National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence are expected to issue a statement that will reinforce the treatment is effective and safe for patients allowing the larger scale trials to begin.
Recruiting is already underway for the first large scale trial and any patients that are interested in being part of the trial should contact their GP or cancer doctor according to HIFU experts.