Radiation therapy for prostate cancer
Also known as radiotherapy, radiation therapy uses a controlled dose of radiation to kill or damage cancer cells so they cannot grow, multiply or spread.
Learn more about:
- When is radiation therapy given?
- External beam radiation therapy (EBRT)
- Side effects of radiation therapy
- Video: What is radiation therapy?
When is radiation therapy given?
Radiation therapy may be used:
- for localised or locally advanced prostate cancer – it has similar rates of success to surgery in controlling prostate cancer that has spread to the lymph nodes
- if you are not well enough for surgery or are older
- after a prostatectomy for locally advanced disease, if there are signs of cancer left behind or the cancer has returned where the prostate used to be
- for prostate cancer that has spread to other parts of the body.
There are two main ways of delivering radiation therapy: from outside the body (external beam radiation therapy) or inside the body (brachytherapy). You may have one of these or a combination of both.
In intermediate and high-risk prostate cancer, radiation therapy is often combined with androgen deprivation therapy (ADT).
More information about radiation therapy
For more information call 13 11 20 or see Radiation therapy. Visit the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia or call 1800 22 00 99 for a resource on radiation therapy for prostate cancer. For more information about how radiation therapy works, visit targetingcancer.com.au.
Video: What is radiation therapy?
Watch this short video to learn more about radiation therapy.
Podcast: Making Treatment Decisions
Download a PDF booklet on this topic.
A/Prof Ian Vela, Urologic Oncologist, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Queensland University of Technology, and Urocology, QLD; A/Prof Arun Azad, Medical Oncologist, Urological Cancers, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; A/Prof Nicholas Brook, Consultant Urological Surgeon, Royal Adelaide Hospital and A/Prof Surgery, The University of Adelaide, SA; Peter Greaves, Consumer; Graham Henry, Consumer; Clin Prof Nat Lenzo, Nuclear Physician and Specialist in Internal Medicine, Group Clinical Director, GenesisCare Theranostics, and Notre Dame University Australia, WA; Henry McGregor, Men’s Health Physiotherapist, Adelaide Men’s Health Physio, SA; Jessica Medd, Senior Clinical Psychologist, Department of Urology, Concord Repatriation General Hospital, NSW; Dr Tom Shakespeare, Director, Radiation Oncology, Coffs Harbour, Port Macquarie and Lismore Public Hospitals, NSW; A/Prof David Smith, Senior Research Fellow, Daffodil Centre, Cancer Council NSW; Allison Turner, Prostate Cancer Specialist Nurse (PCFA), Canberra Region Cancer Centre, Canberra Hospital, ACT; Maria Veale, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council QLD; Michael Walkden, Consumer; Prof Scott Williams, Radiation Oncology Lead, Urology Tumour Stream, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, and Professor of Oncology, Sir Peter MacCallum Department of Oncology, The University of Melbourne, VIC.
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