Written by Dr.Albana Greca Sejdini, Md, MMedSc
What is cryotherapy for prostate cancer? When it is indicated?What are the procedures and other precautionf for this special treatment?
Let us go step by step and learn more about “Cryotherapy”.
First I want you to understand that ‘Cryo’ signifies Cold. Similarly, Cryotherapy denotes the use of cold temperature in the treatment of some diseases.
Generally, this procedure is accomplished with an instrument, called Cryoprobe. This instrument mainly provides extreme cold atmosphere to the selected area.
In case of Prostate cancer, the particular tumor in the prostate gland is selected. Surgeons destroy the selected tumor by freezing with the help of Cryoprobe.
It has been noticed that liquid nitrogen has a peculiar quality. If it can be kept in closed atmosphere, it makes the adjacent surroundings also very cold.
Firstly this procedure was mainly used to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia. The only route was the urethral opening for this procedure.
Gradually, Medical experts have seen that perineal area is more suitable. Perineum is the area that extends from anus to scrotum in male. The Cryoprobe is inserted through perineum with digital assistance and the ultrasonography mainly.
The tumor tissues are gradually ablated. This leads to the destruction of the noxious tissues and thereby, provides the relief to the patient.
Main complication is to isolate the affected tissue and get it destroyed affectively. There is chance of overlapping and injuring some innocuous tissues.
This procedure needs an expert hand to perform.
Now comparatively newer form of approach has also come. Here the route of insertion is through rectum. This is known as ‘Transrectal ultrasonography assisted cryotherapy.
In this case, instead of single Cryoprobe, multiple cryoprobes can be inserted. There arrangement of catheters also. Theses catheters mainly supply warm water to control the temperature.
In addition to this, now some authorities prefer to use argon gas. It is seen that argon gas has more rapid cooling capacity.
Well, when patient is diagnosed, the basic precaution is same. If, you are diagnose with prostate cancer and considering for cryotherapy, the first precaution you are to take is the diet control.
You should stick to mainly vegetables. The diet should have sufficient Vitamin E, selenium and lycopene.
More over, it is better for you to avoid alcohol and smoking as both substances increase the chance of prostate cancer aggravation.
Some kinds of chronic inflammatory diseases increase the chance of prostrate cancer. If you suspect any one, better to get it checked accordingly.
It is observed that the total process is comparatively cumbersome. As mentioned earlier, to isolate the right lesion and keeping the normal tissue intact found to be the main complication.
The insertion of the probe poses some difficulties in more sensitive cases. There is arrangement of Cryoanesthesia also.
Despite all these, the popularity of this procedure is showing a negative graph. Nowadays, the therapy is used in very less centers and the ratio has come down to less than 2% when compared with other measures in treating prostate cancer.
Anyway, you will be evaluated from your medical team to see if you are suitable for this kind of treatment or not. All is mentioned in the above paragraphs is only to make your ideas clear regarding cryotherapy for prostate cancer.