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The time and cost of enrolling men on a prostate cancer study

Principal Investigator: Dr Colin Tang

Radiation therapy is an effective treatment option for men with prostate cancer, however the conventional fractionated treatment using external beam radiation therapy (EBRT) involves up to 8 weeks of daily treatment and is associated with a small risk of troublesome long term bowel and bladder toxicity. Stereotactic body radiotherapy (SRBT) provides the same treatment in only 5 visits and theoretically produces the same local control of prostate cancer with less long term side effects.

The Department of Radiation Oncology at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital has the only CyberKnife® machine in Australia and has been providing CyberKnife® SBRT since April 2014. This system of SBRT also allows real-time tracking of the prostate during treatment, which should have the advantage of reducing long term side effects.

This pilot study assesses the feasibility and cost of randomising men with low- to intermediate-risk prostate cancer to either CyberKnife® SBRT or EBRT, with a view to participating in the international PACE Trial (Prostate Advances in Comparative Evidence). The PACE Trial will investigate the relative benefits of radiotherapy and SRS in terms of biochemical progression-free survival over five years, local failure, distant failure, disease-free survival, disease-specific survival, toxicity and quality of life.