There are several different options for treating cancer. Choosing the appropriate treatment option will depend on several factors. Some of these factors include the cancer type, location of cancer, stage and grade of cancer, whether the patient has been newly diagnosed with a particular type of cancer, or if it is a cancer recurrence, and whether the cancer is localized or metastasized throughout the body. When radiation therapy is recommended, there are several benefits for patients. Below is a list of benefits that patients should consider when making their treatment choice. These benefits can also serve as a great checklist to formulate questions during a consultation with Dr. Garza.
The list below focuses on benefits of radiation therapy for prostate cancer patients.
Benefits of radiation therapy
- Radiation therapy avoids major surgery.
- There is no risk of blood loss, blood transfusion and infection associated with surgery.
- No pain and down time associated with surgery.
- May cure cancer in setting of localized disease.
- Maximum radiation effects delivered to the prostate while minimizing radiation to surrounding tissue.
- Kills cancer cells or greatly reduces number of cancer cells while protecting other organs and tissues in the body.
- Incontinence less common than with surgery.
- Onset of impotence is delayed.
- No side effects associated with hormonal deprivation therapy such as hot flashes, weight gain, loss of muscle mass.
- Can be used as palliative therapy for patients with pain caused by bone metastases.
- Can be used after surgery to treat any remaining cancer cells.
- Treatments are done on an outpatient basis, no hospital stay is required.
- Treatment sessions take only 10-15 minutes.
- Most patients are able to work and continue their normal activities while on treatment.