The researchers at the University of Cambridge have developed a method which will allow people to choose their own treatment for prostate cancer.
This research was published on the official website of the University of Cambridge on March 12, 2019.
This new technique can determine the time period for which the patient is going to survive. This method can also be used to choose the best course of treatment so that the chances of improvement can be increased.
It has been informed by the researchers that there are just one-third patients of prostate cancer who have a less mortality risk. These patients could choose to have surgery or radiotherapy but such remedies affect their survival chances to a little extent.
This new technique is based on a computer questionnaire. During the process of this method, the patient has to complete the questionnaire in a few minutes under the supervision of a doctor. This questionnaire will give the estimated information of factors leading to death such as stage of cancer or other illnesses in the following 10 to 15 years.
Dr. Vincent Gnanapragasam, author of this study said, “This isn't about rationing treatments, it's about empowering patients and their clinicians to make decisions based on better evidence.”
Dr. Gnanapragasam also added, “In some cases, treatment will be the right option, but in many others, patients will want to weigh up the treatment benefits versus the risks of side effects.”
Dr. David Thurtle, Lead Author of the study said, “As far as we are aware, this is the first personalized tool to give an overall survival estimate for men following a prostate cancer diagnosis. We hope it will provide a more accurate and objective estimate to help men reach an informed decision in discussion with their consultant.”
Over 47000 British men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year. This figure is increasing and it can rise by 69 percent by the year 2030. Patients of prostate cancer are divided into three groups such as low, intermediate or high risk.
The analysis of the questionnaire can reveal the chances of survival of the patient after the treatment. The questionnaire under this method is named as Predict Prostate questionnaire. The consequences of the study and its design are published in the PLOS Medicine journal on March 12, 2019.
The questionnaire prepared for this method consists of 10 questions. The method uses data about the age of the individuals, stage of cancer, and other medical tests. The results of this study give authentic information about the patients’ risk of having urinary inconsistency and erectile dysfunction.
Based on such results of the questionnaire, the patient can choose ‘active surveillance’ to get cancer closely monitored apart from surgery or radiation therapy.
This new test gives 84 percent accurate information as per the researchers. To conduct this test, the researchers analyzed over 10,000 British men and 2,546 men from Singapore who were diagnosed with cancer. The researchers state that this new tool can reduce the unnecessary and harmful treatments done by the doctors.