SAN FRANCISCO, Aug. 10 (UPI) — Surgery may be the best choice for prostate cancers likely to recur or spread, U.S. researchers suggest.
Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, found the risk of cancer-specific mortality more than three times higher in patients receiving hormone therapy versus those whose prostate was surgically removed and more than twice as high in patients who received external-beam radiation therapy versus those having surgery.
The study, published in the journal Cancer, concluded the differences among therapies — when looking at long-term survival outcomes — were more prominent at the higher levels of cancer risk.
The study’s lead investigator, Dr. Matthew Cooperberg, pointed out there has been relatively little high-quality evidence on which to base current treatments.
“These therapies can all have significant side effects, so it’s important to understand which treatment alternatives are most effective,” Cooperberg says in a statement. “In current practice, likelihood of undergoing surgery falls progressively with increasing levels of risk, which may be exactly contrary to what the treatment pattern should be.”
Among men with prostate cancers at low levels of risk, Cooperberg and colleagues find very low prostate cancer mortality and treatment options differences were small.
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