New Treatment Reduces Radiation Side Effects for Prostate Cancer


According to the American Cancer Society, one man in nine will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime. The good news is, there is a 99% five-year survival rate for men diagnosed with this cancer.

Depending on the stage and type of prostate cancer diagnosed, treatment options may vary from surgery to radiation or chemotherapy. If radiation is needed, a new option that is proven to significantly reduce radiation side effects in prostate cancer patients was recently introduced at St. Elizabeth Healthcare.

Minimizing Side Effects While Targeting Prostate Cancer

SpaceOAR Hydrogel can be used to help protect your quality of life and minimize side effects if radiation is part of your treatment plan.

Dr. Sue Feeney, Radiation Oncologist at St. Elizabeth, explains, “In properly selected patients, the SpaceOAR can be placed between the rectal wall and prostate to minimize radiation exposure to the rectum during treatment. This can reduce long term rectal side effects from therapy and studies show patients that had SpaceOAR placed reported improvement in quality of life for bowel, urinary, and sexual function.”

The hydrogel is inserted during a simple outpatient procedure and will stay in place for two to three months. The body gradually absorbs it after radiation therapy is completed.

St. Elizabeth Healthcare is continually bringing the latest advancements in cancer care to the patients in the region. In 2020, St. Elizabeth will open its doors to a new $130 million Cancer Center. The new Cancer Center will help St. Elizabeth expand cancer prevention, genetic screening and treatment options in the region. For more information or to see if SpaceOAR is a treatment option for you, please talk to your radiation oncologist.