Radiation therapy for
prostate cancer may be used alone or combined with
hormone treatment. Radiation therapy also is used to relieve
pain from metastatic cancer or cancer that comes back after surgery.
Radiation therapy for locally advanced prostate cancer is often combined
with hormone treatment. Using both together may improve your chances of being
disease-free for longer and living longer.2
External-beam radiation therapy uses a large machine
to aim a beam of radiation at your tumor to destroy cancer cells. The radiation
damages the genetic material of the cells so that they can't grow. Although
radiation damages normal cells as well as cancer cells, the normal cells can
repair themselves and function, while the cancer cells cannot. If cancer has
spread to your bones, radiation treatment may be given to specific areas to
People sometimes use complementary therapies along with medical treatment to help relieve symptoms and side effects of cancer treatments. Some of the complementary therapies that may be helpful include:
Mind-body treatments like those mentioned above may help you feel better and cope better with treatment. These treatments also may reduce chronic low back pain, joint pain, headaches, and pain from cancer treatments.
Before you try a complementary therapy, talk to your doctor about
the possible value and potential side effects. Let your doctor know if you are
already using any such therapies. Complementary therapies are not meant to take
the place of standard medical treatment, but they may improve your quality of
life and help you deal with the stress and side effects of cancer treatment.
may be interested in taking part in research studies called clinical trials. Clinical trials are designed to
find better ways to treat prostate cancer patients and are based on the most up-to-date information. People who do not want standard treatments or are not cured by standard treatments may want to take part in
Check with your doctor to see whether clinical trials are in your area and whether you might be eligible.