The ASCENDE-RT Study
Intermediate and high-risk prostate cancer patients have double the survival chance with brachytherapy seeds
BXTAccelyon Limited, the UK-based brachytherapy company supplying seeds, loaded needle assemblies and associated accessories and equipment to hospitals and clinics worldwide has called for an early review of the availability of seed brachytherapy for patients with intermediate and high-risk prostate cancer.
Low Dose Rate (LDR) Brachytherapy is a form of radiation therapy that involves placing tiny radioactive “seeds” directly into the prostate. The ASCENDE-RT study from Canada, is a randomized trial comparing the use of dose-escalated external beam radiation therapy (DE-EBRT) and low-dose-rate-brachytherapy (LDR-B) in men with intermediate- and high-risk prostate cancer. In summary, the trial demonstrated a 50% decrease in biochemical relapse with the use of LDR-B in conjunction with hormones and whole pelvis radiotherapy when compared to using DE-EBRT with the same treatments in patients randomly assigned to the two forms of treatment.
In the UK and Ireland, around 45,000 new prostate cancer cases are diagnosed annually and two-thirds of these patients have early stage disease which is suitable for LDR brachytherapy treatment. Currently, over 1,500 patients receive brachytherapy seed treatment annually at 36 centres in the UK & Ireland. In Australia and New Zealand around 23,000 new prostate cancer cases are diagnosed annually and over two-thirds of these patients have early stage disease which is suitable for LDR brachytherapy treatment.
Saheed Rashid, Managing Director of BXTAccelyon said: “This type of information can help clinicians and health care commissioners determine the best treatments to offer patients with prostate cancer. The study is extremely valuable in highlighting a need for a change in clinical practice so that men with this type of disease get access to a treatment that gives them a fifty-percent better chance of being free of disease in the long term. Coupled with the convenience and cost-saving benefits of seed brachytherapy as a treatment option and the “release” of valuable time on the machines that are used to deliver radiotherapy, this study is not only hugely important to prostate cancer patients but also to patients with other cancers who often have to wait for time to be treated on these same machines”.
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