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Prostate Seed Implants Deliver Higher Survival Rate, Study Finds

A new study out of Canada provides the latest evidence that prostate seed implant therapy is a highly effective method for treating this disease. Researchers, in fact, found that low-dose radioactive seed implants produce a five-year cancer-free survival rate that is double that found with more conventional high-dose radiation therapy.

The latest study was performed by the Vancouver Cancer Centre and involved 398 men who had cancer that had not yet spread outside the prostate gland. These men were deemed at high risk of treatment failure. Researchers found at the five-year follow-up that men who had undergone seed implantation were twice as likely to be cancer-free than their counterparts who received dose-escalated external beam radiotherapy. Researchers presented their findings recently during the European Society of Radiotherapy and Oncology conference in Spain.

While the results strongly favored seed therapy, researchers did note that overall both therapies have a strong success rate. They, however, believe further research will continue to show an overall survival advantage for those who undergo seed implant therapy.

Prostate seed implants are tiny radioactive pellets that are injected into the prostate gland itself. These seeds are left in place, delivering a steady, low dose of radiation right to the tumor site. They are favored by many men and their physicians not only because of their success rate, but also the fact that implant therapy is one of the less invasive treatments available. Side effect likelihood is also reduced in many cases when this therapy is used, but men should be aware that some side effects are still possible.

Men who are facing prostate cancer may want to discuss the potential of using seed implant therapy in their cases. This procedure is relatively quick and provides men with the ability to return to their normal routines more quickly. The best option for prostate cancer treatment, however, will depend on the individual case in question.

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