Focal Ultrasound Prostate Ablation Shows Promising Results with Fewer Side Effects

Focal Ultrasound Prostate Ablation Shows Promising Results with Fewer Side Effects

A procedure that eliminates only the diseased part of the prostate in prostate cancer patients has shown promising results while causing fewer side effects, including incontinence and impotence, compared to traditional surgery and radiation therapy. The approach is known as high-intensity focal ultrasound (HIFU).

Findings from the first U.S. group study of focal therapy were presented during the Southeastern Section of the American Urological Association in a poster titled, “Functional and Oncologic Outcomes of High Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) for Focal Treatment of Prostate Cancer: A single Institution Experience.

The study, conducted at the University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine, enrolled 50 prostate cancer patients with a median age of 68, who underwent partial ablation of the prostate gland using EDAP TMS‘ HIFU system, called Ablatherm Robotic HIFU. Because the process only ablates the diseased part of the prostate, healthy tissue is preserved, minimizing side effects.

Following the procedure, patients had prostate-specific antigen (PSA) tests every three months, and magnetic resonance imaging–fusion biopsy at six or 12 months, depending on whether they were high- or low-to-intermediate-risk patients, respectively.

Median PSA levels before treatment were 5.5 ng/mL. Three months after HIFU, however, most patients’ levels (83%) had dropped to below 2 ng/mL. Among the 18 patients who underwent a follow-up biopsy, 15 (83%) were negative for the presence of cancer tissue in the ablated area.

The International Prostate Symptom Scores, which assess urinary symptoms and quality of life, increased in several patients, but went back to baseline scores after 3-6 months in 78 percent of patients.

Also, 85 percent of patients maintained erectile function, while 15 percent referred to de novo erectile dysfunction at 12 months.

Overall, these results suggest that HIFU ablation of the prostate leads to short-term benefits in prostate cancer patients. However, “longer follow-up and re-biopsy data are needed before reaching further conclusions regarding oncological efficacy,” researchers wrote.

“These men showed significantly fewer side effects, such as urinary incontinence and erectile dysfunction, compared to traditional whole-gland treatment like surgery and radiation,” Bruno Nahar, MD, the study’s lead author, said in a press release.

“Most importantly, focal HIFU ablation of the prostate showed promising oncological short-term outcomes, even in clinically-significant prostate cancer,” he added.

“These results are very encouraging and in line with EDAP’s long-term strategy of partnering with top US academic institutions to collect clinical data in support of the safety and efficacy of HIFU as a prostate ablation tool, as well as to help patients maintain a high quality of life,” said Marc Oczachowski, chief executive officer of EDAP TMS, a global leader in therapeutic ultrasound.

The results come at a time in which several institutions in the U.S. are launching the first HIFU patient registry.

“We are seeing great momentum in favor of HIFU. These positive clinical findings were presented on the heels of other great news. Over the last month, renowned medical institutions, including the University of Miami, Weil Cornell-Houston Methodist Hospital, Duke University, and the University of Southern California joined forces to launch the first US-based HIFU patient registry to collect high quality clinical data on hundreds of patients,” Oczachowski said.

2 comments

  1. zbymal says:

    Hi Lucia, thanks for reading the blog! I”m a bit confused. Your zoom”s longest focal length is 50mm so you would have to zoom to that in order for that to match your previous 50mm so getting another 50mm lens would be redundant. Now, some zooms that I have tested don”t match the exact focal length of the prime lenses. I test the 100mm macro vs the 24-105mm zoom. This would be because they are totally different lenses so the actual exact focal length called “100mm would be slightly different because the physical length of the lens is different and they are not the same lenses. This is my best guess as to why this happens. Ok now about your quality question the lens you bought is made for a cropped sensor camera. This means the image circle is smaller than lenses that are made for full frame sensors. Lenses made for cropped sensor cameras are not the highest quality because they are being made for the cheaper cameras. If you want good lens quality, you need to get the higher end lenses made for full frame sensor cameras which usually means a lot more money. If you are creating images for print, ideally you want the best quality camera and lenses you can afford. Printing images is the hardest thing to do and all flaws will be shown. Every publisher is different. Some are extremely strict about image quality, others, not so much. So it really depends on who you are working with if your files will be accepted.

  2. Luciano says:

    Do kegels exercises help? I used to deal with strong bph symptoms and my doctor recommended me a supplement named alpharise for it, it has been very effective. And I am really happy with it because I checked many reviews online and I feel like this is one of the best prostate supplements you can find nowadays

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