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Laser ablation may treat prostate cancer

A precise application of the heat is required for the safe treatment without causing adverse effect

Policy Pulse
Publish Date: Jun 13 2016 2:22PM | Updated Date: Jun 13 2016 2:22PM

Laser ablation may treat prostate cancer

Scientists have found that the precise application of laser heat can safely treat prostate cancer without causing adverse effects or changes in any organ function. The research revealed an advance treatment that may lead to a safe and feasible way to treat the disease.

According to the previous research, the laser heat technique uses magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to guide the insertion of a laser fibre into cancerous tumors. When heated, the laser destroys the cancerous tissue.
A follow-up study showed the potential to transfer this treatment for the first time into a clinic setting, using a special device (Artemis) that combines both MRI and ultrasound for real-time imaging.
If the technique, known as MRI-guided focal laser ablation, proves effective, it could improve treatment options and outcomes for men treated for such cancers, said Leonard Marks, a professor at the University of California, US.
Historically, prostate cancer has been treated with surgery and radiation, which can result in serious side effects such as erectile dysfunction and urinary incontinence.
Our feeling was that if you can see prostate cancer using the fusion MRI and can put a needle in the spot to biopsy it, why not stick a laser fibre in the tumour the same way to kill it, Marks said while supporting the result.