Higher Risk of Bladder Cancer After Radiation Therapy

Categories: Winter 2018
According to a new analysis, patients with clinically-localized prostate cancer who were treated with external beam radiation therapy had a higher risk of later developing bladder cancer when compared to patients who had a radical prostatectomy.

The study used data on 84,397 men. Radiation therapy patients had higher rates of developing bladder cancer. After 5 years, 1.26% of patients who underwent radiation developed bladder cancer, compared to 0.75% of men who had radical prostatectomies. After 10 years, the rates of bladder cancer were 2.34% and 1.63% for men who had radiation or a prostatectomy, respectively.

When accounting for multiple variables, the researchers estimated that radiation therapy for localized prostate cancer was associated with a 35%increased risk of bladder cancer compared to radical prostatectomy. The authors suggested that patients with localized prostate cancer should be counseled regarding this risk when they make a decision regarding treatment. They also suggested that a randomized prospective trial is needed to confirm their findings.

The study was published online ahead of print in European Urology in October.

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