Laser Focal Therapy Effective, Causes Few Side Effects, 10-Year Trial Data Shows

Laser Focal Therapy Effective, Causes Few Side Effects, 10-Year Trial Data Shows
Image-guided laser focal therapy is as effective as radical prostate removal surgery at treating men with localized prostate cancer, without the added risks of infection, incontinence, and erectile dysfunction, according to 10-year interim data from a Phase 2 trial. The trial findings were slated to be presented in a poster, “Outpatient Trans-Rectal MR-Guided Laser Focal Therapy Phase II Clinical Trial: Ten-Year Interim Results,” at the 2020 American Urological Association (AUA) Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. That meeting was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The data was published in The Journal of Urology. Focal therapies aim to eliminate only the cancerous regions of the prostate instead of the whole gland. They are increasingly being explored as therapy options for men with low and intermediate risk of localized prostate cancer. This is mainly because these type of therapies are usually associated with fewer undesirable side effects, which can be brought on by the removal of portions of the prostate that scientists say should not be disturbed. “Magnetic resonance image (MRI)-guided laser focal therapy enables doctors to contour their approach to the areas of the prostate that needs to be treated, while creating safety boundaries around the areas that need to remain untouched,” Bernadette M. Greenwood, chief research officer of HALO Diagnostics, said in a press release. “This level of precision compared to other approaches, such as radical prostatectomy, radiation therapy and even other focal or targeted approaches like high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU), substantially lowers the risk of side effects, including urinary incontinence, impotence and decreased bowel function," Greenwood said. "Unlike other treatments, laser foc
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