When it comes to prostate health, here are the four most important letters you need to know: HIFU. These letters stand for High Intensity Focused Ultrasound.
HIFU is a type of cancer treatment. Doctors give the treatment using a machine that gives off high frequency sound waves. These waves deliver a strong beam to a specific part of a cancer. Some cells die when this high intensity ultrasound beam is focused directly onto them.
Doctors have been interested in this type of treatment for nearly 50 years. But it is only in recent years that they have been seriously investigating its use in treating different types of cancer, including prostate cancer. One advantage of this type of treatment is that because it only uses sound waves to kill the cancer cells, it doesn’t have as many side effects as other types of cancer treatments already in use.
Time to ditch PSA
Unlike PSA, HIFU is a revolutionary alternative to radiation treatment that will save lives and it does so without leaving men incontinent and impotent like surgery and radiation do.
In a recent 6-year study of nearly 150 prostate cancer patients who were all treated with HIFU, the recovery rate was astounding.
In fact, it was described as “greater than 99 per cent.” What’s more impressive is that some men went into the study with high grade cancer… and even they had excellent results.
Better still, every one of these men avoided the worst side effects of radiation treatment.
Other benefits of HIFU include:
** HIFU has fewer risks than surgery, so it might be suitable for men with other health problems.
**You only need a short hospital stay – less than 24 hours.
** HIFU may be an option if the cancer comes back after treatment with external beam radiotherapy (EBRT). This isn’t the case with all treatments.
With regulatory approval already in place in many countries, including the European Union, this is clearly the future of prostate cancer treatment. In the UK, HIFU is only available in specialist centres or as part of a clinical trial.
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“Use of MRI in diagnosis and treatment of prostate cancer leads to high rate of cure in recent study” PRNewswire, 10/23/13, prnewswire.com
“Excellence in High Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) Outcomes” Canada Newswire, 1/12/13, newswire.ca