Radiation Oncologist Dr. Stephen Dick at Avera Queen of Peace.
The Avera Queen of Peace Cancer Center installed low dose and high dose brachytherapy which is often referred to internal radiation. Nancy Naeve Brown asked a Radiation Oncologist at Avera Queen of Peace to explain how brachytherapy works for patients with prostate cancer.
Radiation Oncologist Dr. Stephen Dick at Avera Queen of Peace, "Brachytherapy is a way of treating prostate cancer in which we insert radioactive seeds directly inside the prostate gland.
Q: What is the advantage to brachytherapy over other radiation treatments?
A: Brachytherapy is an outpatient surgical procedure that takes an hour to an hour and a half to put the seeds in as opposed to external beam radiation therapy in which the cancer patient has to come to the cancer center everyday for Monday through Friday for 8 1/2 weeks.
Q: Is this used for patients who've had a prostatectomy?
A: This is for patients who have the prostate gland intact and it's usually used in patients who have early stage disease.
Q: What kind of results have you seen?
A: Results for prostate brachytherapy are equivalent to those of external beam radiotherapy and equivalent to having the prostate gland taken out. It is surgery, outpatient surgery, there is no cutting, we place needles inside the prostate gland, put the radioactive seeds in the gland and when we are done we take out the needles and we're done."