Monday, May 7, 2012

HIFU Shows Promise

New research out last week confirms my suspicions that targeted High Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) may be an exciting new alternative to treatment of tumors that are hard to get to, or surgically unpleasant to treat.  In the case of prostate cancer, I would certainly want an alternative to the radical prostatectomy procedure in common use because of the side effects of surgery which includes, pain, incontinence, and other nasty issues.  New research suggests this non-invasive procedure is safe and effective.  Of course further research is needed, but I am excited about the possibilities in other difficult to treat lesions such as certain brain tumors, pancreatic lesions and esophageal masses.

“Soundwaves could help 95% of prostate cancer patients … without affecting sex life,” the Daily Mirror reported today. Its story comes from a small study that looked at an experimental treatment using high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) to target areas of prostate cancer in men where the disease had not spread.
Standard treatments for prostate cancer often lead to undesirable side effects, in particular erectile dysfunction and urinary incontinence. Researchers found that a year after this experimental treatment, 89% of men still had erectile function and all were still continent. Ninety-five per cent of the men showed no evidence of disease on an MRI scan.

 Thanks Sonoworld for cross linking with NHS.UK  Enjoy!