When doctors talk about using radiation to treat prostate cancer, patients need to understand that while radiation is a successful alternative to surgery, not all radiation treatments work the same way.
For example, CyberKnife and Proton therapy are two different forms of radiation used to treat prostate cancer and other types of cancer. They both can be used for stereotactic body radiation therapy or SBRT. However, not all Proton Centers use SBRT. Many uses conventional treatment courses of 25 to 35 treatments.
SBRT sends targeted high-dose energy to a specific part of the body – like the prostate – to kill the cancer. It has been used for the better part of two decades and was first used for lung and liver cancers.
But there are distinct differences between CyberKnife and Proton therapy.
CyberKnife For Prostate Cancer
CyberKnife is what the experts at the CyberKnife Center of Miami – a state-of-the-art, free-standing radiation treatment center — use to treat patients.
“Years of mounting research is proving CyberKnife to be the gold standard for treating prostate cancer, and as more men learn about CyberKnife, it is becoming the number one treatment of choice,” says Dr. Mark Pomper, board-certified radiation oncologist and medical director of CyberKnife Miami.
CyberKnife technology uses an image guided linear accelerator to deliver precision radiation by a robotic arm, according to Accuray, CyberKnife’s maker.
“CyberKnife accuracy is sub millimetric, which can help significantly reduce the risk of the side effects that too often disrupt the lives of patients during and after treatment,” Accuray states.
“If the patient breathes or moves, the CyberKnife actually move with the patient,” Dr. Pomper says on CyberKnife Miami’s YouTube Channel. ““That allows us to be the most precise treatment available.”
Here are Additional Benefits of CyberKnife:
- It is completely non-invasive.
- CyberKnife has up to a 98% success rate for prostate cancer.
- You can resume your normal activities immediately following treatment.
- No catheter or rectal balloon is needed.
- Minimal to no side effects.
- No anesthesia is needed.
- Each treatment lasts around 30 minutes.
- Treatments can be completed in 5 treatments over 10 days.
- Preservation of sexual function remained the same for most men after treatment.
- The CyberKnife radiation beams, which target and destroy the tumor, are very precise. That means there is less risk of side effects including impotence and incontinence.
- CyberKnife is an alternative treatment option for certain patients. Individuals who are not candidates for surgery or chemotherapy, or those who have been previously treated with radiation, may be a candidate for CyberKnife.
Proton Therapy for Prostate Cancer
Now let’s take a look at Proton therapy for prostate cancer.
The American Society of Clinical Oncology says Proton therapy uses protons – positively charged particles — instead of radiation to target a tumor. With high energy, the protons can kill cancer cells.
According to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, Oncology in December of 2019, proton beam radiation therapy may be safer and just as effective as traditional radiation.
Traditional radiation delivers x-rays to the tumor and beyond and it can damage nearby healthy tissue. Proton therapy is more targeted, according to an article published by the National Cancer Institute.
- With Proton therapy, doctors determine the precise point in a patient’s body where the proton releases its energy – that maximizes exposure to cancer cells while minimizing exposure to normal tissue.
- Proton therapy is usually delivered in 20-to-35 treatments with typical out-patient sessions lasting less than five minutes.
- Side effects like fatigue are usually minor and temporary.
- Proton beam therapy uses lower doses of radiation compared to CyberKnife, so more treatments are needed. Proton therapy treatments happen over a four-to-six-week period instead of just five days with CyberKnife.
Prostate Cancer Treatment Near Me
Proton therapy and CyberKnife are both options for prostate cancer treatment.
Even if your doctor recommends one type of treatment, the experts at CyberKnife Miami recommend getting a second opinion and a consultation so you really understand your options.
We see patients from across South Florida and around the world, and we have since we opened our doors two decades ago. And we will take cases other centers may not treat because they don’t have the experience we do.
If you are diagnosed with prostate cancer, call CyberKnife Miami for a consultation. Our goal is to get you back to your life – cancer free with minimal to no downtime.
If you would like to find out more about prostate cancer treatment with CyberKnife, call us at 305-279-2900 or go to our prostate cancer website now for more information.