Prostate Cancer Advances With Laser-activated Drug
Trial results of a new technique in the treatment of prostate cancer which is less invasive than surgery has provided hope for thousands of patients who want to avoid the side effects of traditional surgery. The vascular-targeted photodynamic therapy (VTP) technique in treating prostate cancer involves the injection into the bloodstream of a light-sensitive drug which is then activated by inserting optical fibers through which the laser pulses are fired.
Half of the 196 men who were given the light-sensitive prostate drug showed negative for prostate diseases even two years after the procedure. However, only 13.5% of patients who received standard care were reported free of the disease. Those who received the VTP treatments showed no symptoms of urinary incontinence and impotence usually associated with traditional ratiotherapy or surgery since the breakthrough treatment targets only tumours in the prostate.
"This is truly a huge leap forward for prostate cancer treatment, which has previously lagged decades behind other solid cancers such as breast cancer," said Professor Mark Emberton, University College London Hospital consultant Urologist according to The Guardian.
Mayo Clinic said benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is traditionally treated through prostate laser surgery. Using this procedure, a scope is inserted into the top of the penis onto the urethra or the tube responsible for carrying urine from the bladder. The laser, which passes through this scope, blasts energy to remove or shrink the tissue blockage that makes the flow of urine difficult.
According to NCBI, the survival of prostate cancer patients will depend on early diagnosis of the disease which is why early screening for prostate cancer is encouraged. The discovery of the vascular targeted photodynamic therapy technique for the treatment of prostate cancer will not only improve the quality of treatment for prostate as it is said to have the most minimal collateral damage to other organs surrounding the prostate.