New Incision-Free Ultrasound Treatment for Prostate Cancer Unveiled

A study shows the new technique is very effective

Dec 17, 2019

 (Erica Smit / Shutterstock.com)

Ask any guy who the stronger sex is, and they will be quick to tell you and that men are. Males may be larger and more muscular than females but that doesn't actually make them stronger medically. In fact, according to Harvard Health, they are actually the weaker sex when it comes to health.

This misconception that men are stronger may lead them to avoid getting medical help especially if the illness is an uncomfortable topic like prostate cancer. Even though prostate cancer is the number two leading cancer for men in the US, the fear of surgery and side effects scares many men from seeking treatment but that could be about to change. A new incision-free ultrasound procedure could be a major game-changer.

A new study of this pioneering new approach uses sound waves to heat and destroy tumors and leaves the healthy surrounding tissue untouched according to Science Daily. This minimally invasive method that is called MRI-guided transurethral ultrasound ablation (TULSA) relies on a rod-shaped device that is inserted directly into the urethra and are controlled by a software algorithm.

What's even more remarkable is that the entire procedure — called Tulsa-pro – is done in an MRI scanner and not in an operating room.

"It's an outpatient procedure with minimal recovery time," study co-author Steven S. Raman, M.D., professor of radiology and urology, and director of Prostate MR Imaging and Interventions and Prostate MR Imaging Research at the University of California at Los Angeles(UCLA) said in a statement.

The new study, which was presented at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America that was held from December 1 through 6 in Chicago, Illinois, reported on the 12-month outcomes from the trial that enrolled 115 men with a median age of 65.

The outcomes of the study showed that the tumors shrunk an average of 39 cubic centimeters and cancer was eliminated in 80 percent of the study participants. After a year, biopsies showed that 65 percent of the men had no evidence of any cancer.

"We saw very good results in the patients, with a dramatic reduction of over 90 percent in prostate volume and low rates of impotence with almost no incontinence [ the most common problems after traditional treatments]," Raman said.

Tulsa pro is so effective that it has been approved for clinical use in Europe and according to Science Daily, has received FDA 510(k) clearance for prostate tissue ablation in the United States.

There have also been many advances in diagnostic tools for prostate cancer that will help to diagnose men earlier and now, with this new minimally invasive treatment available many more lives can be saved. Especially for men who are reluctant to use the traditional treatments for prostate cancer.

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BONNIE RIVA RAS, EDITOR & WRITER
Bonnie Riva Ras has dedicated her life to promoting social justice. She loves to write about empowering women, helping children, educational innovations, and advocating for the environment & sustainability.