Higher doses of external beam radiation improve disease-free PCa survival

October 14, 2004

An increased dose of highly conformal external beam radiation shows a survival advantage over conventional-dose therapy in men with early-stage prostate cancer, according to study results presented at the American Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology annual meeting in Atlanta.

An increased dose of highly conformal external beam radiation shows a survival advantage over conventional-dose therapy in men with early-stage prostate cancer, according to study results presented at the American Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology annual meeting in Atlanta.

Investigators from Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and Loma Linda University School of Medicine treated 393 men with early-stage prostate cancer with either the conventional-dose or high-dose radiation therapy. The 5-year disease-free survival rate for those receiving the higher dose of radiation was 17%, compared with 35% among conventional-dose patients.

"This study suggests that radiation oncologists can and should be more aggressive in their treatment of prostate cancer provided they have sophisticated dose delivery techniques such as proton beam at their disposal," said lead author Anthony L. Zietman, MD, of Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston.