Doctors aggressively treat prostate cancer

July 15, 2004 at 6:42 PM
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NEW YORK, July 15 (UPI) -- U.S. doctors have been treating prostate cancer more aggressively with radiation therapy to cure more patients of the disease, researchers said.

Study results published by the International Journal of Radiation Oncology, Biology, Physics found radiation oncologists are using higher doses of external beam radiation therapy to treat both earlier stages and more aggressive forms of prostate cancer.

Researchers from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center analyzed records from more than 550 patients across the United States. The records show that in 1999, some 45 percent of prostate cancer patients were treated with higher doses of radiation therapy, compared to 3 percent in 1989 and 1994.

Researchers said favorable results of clinical trials persuaded many radiation oncologists to add androgen deprivation therapy -- a hormone therapy -- to radiation therapy to treat more advanced or aggressive cancers.

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