The Pros and Cons of HIFU Treatment for Prostate Cancer

As you consider the different treatment options available for localized prostate cancer, be sure to pay attention to both the pros and cons of each option. This is especially important because the physical benefits to survivors are often very similar, but the potential for complications can be different between treatment options. Remember that the patient, a spouse and the rest of the family may be affected by the possible complications. Take a moment to review the pros and cons of high-intensity focused ultrasound treatment, as well as some thoughts on cryoablation, radiation and surgery options. Of course, you should ultimately make this decision with your health care provider.

Advantages and Disadvantages

It is possible to treat prostate cancer without entirely removing the prostate with a radical or robotic prostatectomy. The HIFU treatment for prostate cancer is minimally invasive, which is a clear benefit. It also has very few negative effects. Additional benefits of the HIFU include effective results for the treatment of localized prostate cancer without negatively impacting the quality of life, low incidence of complications, no need for overnight hospital stays, a quick recovery time, no blood loss and minimal damage to the penis. If other treatment methods have been attempted, HIFU can be used after those treatments.

There are a few disadvantages to the high-intensity focused ultrasound treatment method. For example, there may be some scarring of the prostate and there’s some evidence to show that it may not be as effective as other treatment methods. It can also be more expensive than some other options.

How Does HIFU Work

As you discuss the various treatment methods with your health care providers, it can be helpful to know how the HIFU treatment for prostate cancer works. Heat is used in this technique to destroy the cancer-affected area(s) of the prostate gland. The medical professional will use a highly-focused and high-intensity focused ultrasound probe to complete the procedure. You’ll also want to discuss the eligibility for this treatment method. If your cancer has spread beyond the prostate gland, you probably won’t be eligible. On the other hand, if you have recurrent cancer and have previously experienced radiotherapy treatment, you could still be eligible for this treatment method. Be sure to discuss all of your options with the professional.

Other Treatment Options

Cryoablation, radiation and surgery are other treatment methods for prostate cancer. Cryoablation treatment uses extreme cold, in the form of a gas inserted directly into the cancerous tissue. External beam radiation therapy is often chosen when cancer is in the earliest stages or to treat bone cancer symptoms. Surgery for prostate cancer often entails the transurethral resection of the prostate. This can be used to alleviate some of the symptoms in men suffering advanced prostate. Each of these options has its own pros and cons. However, if you are concerned with your quality of life following the procedure, HIFU treatment for prostate cancer may be one of your best options.

If you’re suffering from prostate cancer and considering the various methods of treatment, be sure to carefully review the many pros and cons for each treatment method. Remember to consider the quality of life after treatment. Always discuss these options with your medical provider.