IMRT vs Hypofractionation
Recently there has been significant information in the local media about Radiation Oncology treatments for prostate cancer that last significantly less than the Oregon Urology Institute standard treatment of 45 days. This shorter treatment is called Hypofractionation and has emerged over the last few years. The theory of Hypofractionation is that fewer treatments at a higher dose per treatment may improve patient outcomes, reduce overall treatment costs and be more convenient for the patient.
All of that seems well and good, however, the problem is that current data cannot confirm improved patient outcomes. Multiple findings show that incidence of GI (stomach and intestines) and GU (urinary system) complications were higher with Hypofractionization.
The Oregon Urology Institute has the ability to provide Hypofractionation but has elected to not pursue it at this time because studies have not been positive in their results. Though we very much would like to lower the cost and improve the convenience of this treatment, we will not adjust our treatment protocols until we are 100% certain of the safety of the change.
We will continue to monitor the data and encourage you to have a conversation with your Urologist and Radiation Oncologist about this very important topic.