Prostate cancer is a serious disease that affects nearly a quarter of a million men every year. The American Cancer Society estimates that nearly 30,000 men will die from the disease this year. Fortunately, new medical breakthroughs are making it easier for men to fight the disease. Here are some things that they will need to be aware of.
Medical professionals are looking for ways to treat prostate cancer more effectively. Here are some new developments that can help people with the disease.
Study on Chemotherapy
A recent study from Essentia Health showed that the standard protocol for treating prostate cancer may not be optimally effective.
Most oncologists put patients on hormone treatments shortly after diagnosing them with prostate cancer. They generally wait for the cancer to metastasize before resorting to chemotherapy. Dr. Daniel Nikcevich, an oncologist from Essentia Health, studied several of his patients. He found that patients seem to have higher recovery rates if they receive chemotherapy at the beginning.
New 3-D Imaging Technology
Prostate cancer can be very difficult to diagnose. Doctors typically look for elevated levels of PSA. However, abnormal PSA levels don’t necessarily indicate that a patient is suffering from cancer. Doctors generally need to conduct biopsies and other tests to make sure. Unfortunately, cancer can still be difficult to identify with even the most sophisticated monitoring tools.
A new 3-D imaging tool may help medical professionals identify prostate cancer more accurately. The new technology analyzes blood flow, tissue density and other variables that can help identify tumors more easily. Leonard Marks, a doctor with UCLA, is confident that the new treatment will help reduce false negatives.
The new MRI tool has been shown to be very useful so far. Doctors have used it to retest over 100 men that were told that they were in the early stages of prostate cancer. The test revealed that over a third of these men actually had rapidly growing tumors that needed more aggressive treatments.
New Cancer Drugs
European pharmaceutical companies have introduced a number of new medications that have helped treat prostate cancer. Those drugs have been highly effective, so they should help patients in the U.S. as well. The drugs are still pending FDA approval, but many of them should be available in the future.
Cancer Patients Will Benefit from New Treatments
Tens of thousands of men die from prostate cancer every year. Fortunately, has declined significantly in recent years. The Genitourinary Cancers Symposium found that figure has steadily dropped and expects the trend will continue in the future.
Advances in medical treatments such as those offered here have given patients more hope. Medical professionals will use these new treatments to benefit their patients in the months to come.