Home » Resources » Links


There is a vast wealth available of information online about cancer and treatment options. The following links are intended to help you research your medical condition, find support groups.

Note: Inclusion of these website links and materials does not constitute or imply an endorsement or recommendation by Terk Oncology.





In an effort to provide our patients and their families with the best possible care, all patients treated at the Florida Center for Prostate Care are closely monitored by our dedicated team and tracked in our computerized database. In addition, all seed implants are carefully analyzed for quality assurance.

We continually strive to offer our patients the newest and most innovative cancer treatments available by participating in both national and regional research trials. This includes participation with:

  • National Cancer Institute

  • Radiation Therapy Oncology Group

  • Eastern Co-Operative Oncology Group

  • N.S.A.B.P.

  • Southwest Oncology Group

  • Numerous Pharmaceutical Companies



Hours of operation
Patient Area
Radiation Therapy

The influence of stigma on the quality of life for prostate cancer survivors

Andrew W. Wood, PhDa, Sejal Barden, PhDb, Mitchell Terk, MDc, and Jamie Cesaretti, MD, MSc

aDepartment of Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Antioch University Seattle, Seattle, WA, USA; bDepartment of Child, Family, and Community Sciences, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL, USA; cSouthpoint Cancer Center, Jacksonville, FL, USA 


The purpose of the present study was to investigate the influence of stigma on prostate cancer (PCa) survivors’ quality of life. Stigma for lung cancer survivors has been the focus of considerable research (Else-Quest & Jackson, 2014); however, gaps remain in understanding the experience of PCa stigma. A cross-sectional correlational study was designed to assess the incidence of PCa stigma and its influence on the quality of life of survivors. Eighty-five PCa survivors were administered survey packets consisting of a stigma measure, a PCa-specific quality of life measure, and a demographic survey during treatment of their disease. A linear regression analysis was conducted with the data received from PCa survivors. Results indicated that PCa stigma has a significant, negative influence on the quality of life for survivors (R2 = 0.33, F(4, 80) = 11.53, p < 0.001). There were no statistically significant differences in PCa stigma based on demographic variables (e.g., race and age). Implications for physical and mental health practitioners and researchers are discussed.



Differential Safety Between Top-Ranked Cancer Hospitals and Their Affiliates for Complex Cancer Surgery 

Jessica R. Hoag, PhD; Benjamin J. Resio, MD; Andres F. Monsalve, MD; Alexander S. Chiu, MD; Lawrence B. Brown, MHS; Jeph Herrin, PhD; Justin D. Blasberg, MD; Anthony W. Kim, MD; Daniel J. Boffa, MD 

IMPORTANCE Leading cancer hospitals have increasingly shared their brands with other hospitals through growing networks of affiliations. However, the brand of top-ranked cancer hospitals may evoke distinct reputations for safety and quality that do not extend to all hospitals within these networks.


OBJECTIVE To assess perioperative mortality of Medicare beneficiaries after complex cancer surgery across hospitals participating in networks with top-ranked cancer hospitals.

DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS A cross-sectional study was performed of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services 100% Medicare Provider and Analysis Review file from January 1, 2013, to December 31, 2016, for top-ranked cancer hospitals (as assessed by U.S. News andWorld Report) and affiliated hospitals that share their brand. Participants were 29 228 Medicare beneficiaries older than 65 years who underwent complex cancer surgery (lobectomy, esophagectomy, gastrectomy, colectomy, and pancreaticoduodenectomy [Whipple procedure]) between January 1, 2013, and October 1, 2016.



November 2018: Comparing Pencil Beam Scanning Protons has even more side effects than traditional Proton Beam Therapy

The use of proton beam therapy for the treatment of prostate cancer is recommended against by ASTRO unless used in a research study. This hasn't stopped people from trying to find newer proton beam therapy techniques, such as pencil beam scanning, with the hope of finding a type of proton therapy that was safe and effective. However, a recently published study found that the new technique of pencil beam scanning for the treatment of prostate cancer left patients with even MORE side effects than the older traditional proton therapy (which had even more side effects than IMRT).


Patient-Reported Outcomes (PROs) Comparing Pencil Beam Scanning (PBS) and Double Scatter/Uniform Scanning Proton Beam Therapy for Localized Prostate Cancer (PC): Analysis of PCG 001-09


The use of proton beam therapy (PBT) for treatment of prostate cancer (PC) is controversial. ASTRO recommends against use of PBT for PC outside of a clinical trial or prospective registry. A pivotal randomized controlled trial comparing PBT and photon-based treatment is underway. However, PBT delivery has evolved from “conventional” PBT techniques (uniform scanning/double scatter [US/DS]) to PBS technology since this trial was first activated. Although PBS is thought to be the most conformal method for PBT delivery, it is unknown whether differences in toxicity outcomes characterize the 2 techniques.

Breast Cancer Screening in Women at Higher-Than-Average Risk: Recommendations From the ACR.


Early detection decreases breast cancer mortality. The ACR recommends annual mammographic screening beginning at age 40 for women of average risk. Higher-risk women should start mammographic screening earlier and may benefit from supplemental screening modalities. For women with genetics-based increased risk (and their untested first-degree relatives), with a calculated lifetime risk of 20% or more or a history of chest or mantle radiation therapy at a young age, supplemental screening with contrast-enhanced breast MRI is recommended. Breast MRI is also recommended for women with personal histories of breast cancer and dense tissue, or those diagnosed by age 50. Others with histories of breast cancer and those with atypia at biopsy should consider additional surveillance with MRI, especially if other risk factors are present. Ultrasound can be considered for those who qualify for but cannot undergo MRI. All women, especially black women and those of Ashkenazi Jewish descent, should be evaluated for breast cancer risk no later than age 30, so that those at higher risk can be identified and can benefit from supplemental screening.


Breast cancer screening; breast MRI; breast cancer; breast cancer risk assessment; digital breast tomosynthesis; higher risk populations



3. Brachytherapy. 2014 Jan-Feb;13(1):53-8. doi: 10.1016/j.brachy.2013.10.012. Epub 2013 Dec 2.
Salvage brachytherapy for recurrent prostate cancer.
Vargas C(1), Swartz D(2), Vashi A(2), Blasser M(3), Kasraeian A(4), Cesaretti J(5), Kiley K(5), Koziol J(5), Terk M(5).
Author information: (1)Florida Center for Prostate Care, Jacksonville, FL. Electronic address: cvargas@frogdocs.com. (2)McIver Urological Clinic, Jacksonville, FL. (3)Urology Associates of Northeast Florida, Orange Park, FL. (4)Kasraeian Urology, Jacksonville, FL. (5)Florida Center for Prostate Care, Jacksonville, FL.
PURPOSE: To evaluate the role of salvage prostate brachytherapy for locally recurrent prostate cancer after external beam radiation alone.
METHODS AND MATERIALS: Sixty-nine consecutive patients treated with salvage brachytherapy after a local failure were analyzed. All patients were found to have pathologic proven recurrent prostate cancer at least 2 years after initial therapy and no regional or distant disease on imaging studies. Pd-103 was used with a prescribed pD90 of 100 Gy. In total, 89.9% of patients received androgen suppression (AS) as part of their salvage therapy. Patients whose prostate-specific antigen >5.0 ng/mL while on AS were considered to have castration resistant prostate cancer (CRPC). Patients on AS >6 months before salvage brachytherapy were considered to have delayed therapy. Patients retreated within 5 years after their initial treatment were considered to have early failures.
RESULTS: Total median followup after salvage therapy was 5.0 years (0.6-13.7). From the date of salvage, 5-year biochemical control for low-risk patients was 85.6%, intermediate-risk patients 74.8%, and high-risk patients 66%. Five-year biochemical control was 73.8% for non-CRPC and 22% for CRPC cases (<0.001). Including and excluding CRPC cases, early treatment after failure vs. delayed treatment was significantly better (p<0.05). Chronic adverse events were seen in few patients, with genitourinary Grade 3 toxicity of 8.7% and no genitourinary Grade 4 or gastrointestinal Grade 3 or higher toxicities.
CONCLUSIONS: A subset of failures after definitive radiation is local in nature, and excellent control is possible with salvage brachytherapy. Copyright © 2014 American Brachytherapy Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. DOI: 10.1016/j.brachy.2013.10.012 PMID: 24295965 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
4. Brachytherapy. 2013 Mar-Apr;12(2):120-5. doi: 10.1016/j.brachy.2012.08.002. Epub 2012 Oct 10.
Long-term outcomes and prognostic factors in patients treated with intraoperatively planned prostate brachytherapy.
Vargas C(1), Swartz D, Vashi A, Blasser M, Kasareian A, Cesaretti J, Kiley K, Terk M. Author information:
(1)Florida Center for Prostate Care, Jacksonville, FL, USA. cvargas@frogdocs.com
PURPOSE: Evaluate outcomes and prognostic factors in men with localized prostate cancer.
METHODS AND MATERIALS: A total of 3760 patients have undergone prostate seed implantation at our institution. This review is of our initial 304 consecutive patients treated before January 30, 2001. A total of 124 patients were treated with (125)I implant monotherapy and 180 with (103)Pd implant combined with 45-Gy external beam radiation therapy. RESULTS: The median followup was 10.3 years. A 10-year biochemical control for low risk (LR) was 98% , intermediate risk (IR) 94%, high risk (HR) 78%, and HR with one HR factor 88% (p < 0.001); cause-specific survival was 99%, 98%, and 84% for LR, IR, and HR, respectively (p < 0.001); No significant difference in outcome was seen for LR and IR patients (p > 0.3). On multivariate analysis, only pretreatment PSA, Gleason score, and T-stage were significant for biochemical control. Most biochemical failures occurred within 5 years (93%). 
CONCLUSIONS: With a minimum followup of 10 years, results are excellent and do not differ for LR or IR prostate cancer patients. HR patients are a very heterogeneous group, and excellent results can still be achieved for HR patients with only one HR feature.
Copyright © 2013 American Brachytherapy Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
DOI: 10.1016/j.brachy.2012.08.002
PMID: 23062705 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
5. Radiother Oncol. 2013 Jun;107(3):372-6. doi: 10.1016/j.radonc.2013.05.001. Epub 2013 May 26.
Genome-wide association study identifies a region on chromosome 11q14.3 associated with late rectal bleeding following radiation therapy for prostate cancer.
Kerns SL(1), Stock RG, Stone NN, Blacksburg SR, Rath L, Vega A, Fachal L, Gómez-Caamaño A, De Ruysscher D, Lammering G, Parliament M, Blackshaw M, Sia M, Cesaretti J, Terk M, Hixson R, Rosenstein BS, Ostrer H.
Author information:
(1)Department of Radiation Oncology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY 10029, USA.
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Rectal bleeding can occur following radiotherapy for prostate cancer and negatively impacts quality of life for cancer survivors. Treatment and clinical factors do not fully predict rectal bleeding, and genetic factors may be important.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: A genome-wide association study (GWAS) was performed to identify SNPs associated with the development of late rectal bleeding following radiotherapy for prostate cancer. Logistic regression was used to test the association between 614,453 SNPs and rectal bleeding in a discovery cohort (79 cases, 289 controls), and top-ranking SNPs were tested in a replication cohort (108 cases, 673 controls) from four independent sites. RESULTS: rs7120482 and rs17630638, which tag a single locus on chromosome 11q14.3, reached genome-wide significance for association with rectal bleeding (combined p-values 5.4×10(-8) and 6.9×10(-7) respectively). Several other SNPs had p-values trending toward genome-wide significance, and a polygenic risk score including these SNPs shows a strong rank-correlation with rectal bleeding (Sommers' d=5.0×10(-12) in the replication cohort).
CONCLUSIONS: This GWAS identified novel genetic markers of rectal bleeding following prostate radiotherapy. These findings could lead to the development of a predictive assay to identify patients at risk for this adverse treatment outcome so that dose or treatment modality could be modified.
Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
DOI: 10.1016/j.radonc.2013.05.001
PMCID: PMC3787843 PMID: 23719583 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
6. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2013 Jan 1;85(1):e21-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ijrobp.2012.08.003. Epub 2012 Sep 26.
A 2-stage genome-wide association study to identify single nucleotide polymorphisms associated with development of erectile dysfunction following radiation therapy for prostate cancer.
Kerns SL(1), Stock R, Stone N, Buckstein M, Shao Y, Campbell C, Rath L, De Ruysscher D, Lammering G, Hixson R, Cesaretti J, Terk M, Ostrer H, Rosenstein BS.
Author information:
(1)Department of Radiation Oncology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, New York 10029, USA.
PURPOSE: To identify single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with development of erectile dysfunction (ED) among prostate cancer patients treated with radiation therapy.
METHODS AND MATERIALS: A 2-stage genome-wide association study was performed. Patients were split randomly into a stage I discovery cohort (132 cases, 103 controls) and a stage II replication cohort (128 cases, 102 controls). The discovery cohort was genotyped using Affymetrix 6.0 genome-wide arrays. The 940 top ranking SNPs selected from the discovery cohort were genotyped in the replication cohort using Illumina iSelect custom SNP arrays.
RESULTS: Twelve SNPs identified in the discovery cohort and validated in the replication cohort were associated with development of ED following radiation therapy (Fisher combined P values 2.1×10(-5) to 6.2×10(-4)). Notably, these 12 SNPs lie in or near genes involved in erectile function or other normal cellular functions (adhesion and signaling) rather than DNA damage repair. In a multivariable model including nongenetic risk factors, the odds ratios for these SNPs ranged from 1.6 to 5.6 in the pooled cohort. There was a striking relationship between the cumulative number of SNP risk alleles an individual possessed and ED status (Sommers' D P value=1.7×10(-29)). A 1-allele increase in cumulative SNP score increased the odds for developing ED by a factor of 2.2 (P value=2.1×10(-19)). The cumulative SNP score model had a sensitivity of 84% and specificity of 75% for prediction of developing ED at the radiation therapy planning stage.
CONCLUSIONS: This genome-wide association study identified a set of SNPs that are associated with development of ED following radiation therapy. These candidate genetic predictors warrant more definitive validation in an independent cohort.
Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
DOI: 10.1016/j.ijrobp.2012.08.003
PMCID: PMC3616619
PMID: 23021708 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
16. Gynecol Oncol. 1997 Dec;67(3):309-15.
Enhanced radiosensitization with interferon-alpha-2b and cisplatin in the treatment of locally advanced cervical carcinoma.
Stock RG(1), Dottino P, Jennings TS, Terk M, DeWyngaert JK, Beddoe AM, Cohen C.
Author information: (1)Department of Radiation Oncology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, New York 10029, USA.
PURPOSE: To evaluate the efficacy and toxicity of interferon-alpha-2b (IFN-alpha) and cisplatin given concomitantly with radiation therapy (RT) in the treatment of locally advanced cervical carcinoma.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Twenty-one patients with stage bulky Ib-IIIb (Ib, 2; IIa, 2; IIb, 8; IIIb, 9) cervical carcinoma were treated with combined IFN-alpha (5 million IU) subcutaneously three times per week and cisplatin (25 mg/m2) i.v. infusion over 2 h weekly for 7 weeks, given concomitantly with RT (4500 cGy of external beam plus 2 brachytherapy procedures). Total radiation doses delivered ranged from 7500 to 9960 cGy (median, 9300 cGy). Follow-up ranged from 16 to 33 months (median, 25 months).
RESULTS: The 2-year local control rate was 100%. The only sites of disease recurrence were distant. Freedom from distant metastases, disease-free survival, and overall survival at 2 years was 76%. Late complication rates were high. Grade 4 rectosigmoid, bladder, and small bowel complication rates were 49, 18, and 23% at 2 years. Late toxicity was seen earlier than expected with rectosigmoid complications observed 5 to 11.5 months (median, 8 months) after completion of treatment.
CONCLUSION: Combination IFN-alpha and cisplatin produced a marked effect of enhanced radiosensitization as evidenced by 100% local tumor control and high late normal tissue complication rates. Due to the unacceptable late toxicity, its routine clinical use cannot be recommended. Further investigation is needed to determine whether a therapeutic window exists such that the use of lower doses of IFN-alpha, cisplatin, or RT can increase tumor control with more acceptable normal tissue toxicity.
DOI: 10.1006/gyno.1997.4879
PMID: 9441780 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
17. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 1997 Mar 1;37(4):819-25.
A new technique for performing Syed-Neblett template interstitial implants for gynecologic malignancies using transrectal-ultrasound guidance.
Stock RG(1), Chan K, Terk M, Dewyngaert JK, Stone NN, Dottino P.
Author information:
(1)Department of Radiation Oncology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY 10029, USA.
PURPOSE: Interstitial brachytherapy plays an important role in the treatment of advanced and recurrent gynecologic malignancies. Unfortunately, the inability to visualize the tumor and surrounding normal structures during the implant has hampered the accuracy and safety of the implant. Transrectal ultrasound guided Syed-Neblett template implantation is a new technique for performing interstitial implants under direct visualization. The details of the technique are presented to demonstrate the ability to accurately guide needle placement into tumor and avoid needle insertion into critical surrounding normal structures.
METHODS AND MATERIALS: The transrectal ultrasound is positioned so that it can visualize the tumor, and normal surrounding structures in both transverse and longitudinal planes. The Syed-Neblett template is positioned and sutured into the perineum. Needles are inserted into the target area under direct visualization through transverse imaging. The bladder and rectum can be directly imaged and thus avoided. Longitudinal imaging is then used to guide the needles to the appropriate depth. In addition, it can be used to assess the length of the target volume and aid in determining the active length of the sources.
RESULTS: A total of 12 procedures have been performed on seven patients from August 30, 1995 to April 12, 1996. The presenting diseases included: Stage IIIb cervical cancer in four cases, recurrent endometrial cancer in two cases, and Stage III vaginal cancer in one case. The total length of time for implantation of the needles ranged from 45 to 165 min (median--130 min).
CONCLUSION: Transrectal ultrasound guidance provides real-time visualization of the target volume and normal tissues during interstitial implantation of gynecologic malignancies and allows for accurate needle placement.
PMID: 9128957 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
18. J Magn Reson Imaging. 1997 Mar-Apr;7(2):451-4.
Peroneal tendons: use of kinematic MR imaging of the ankle to determine subluxation.
Shellock FG(1), Feske W, Frey C, Terk M.
Author information:
(1)Future Diagnostics, Inc., Los Angeles, California, USA.
The purpose of this study was to develop a technique for kinematic MRI of the ankle to evaluate subluxation of the peroneal tendons. A special device was used to perform incremental, passive positioning of the ankle from dorsiflexed to plantarflexed positions for the kinematic MRI examination. A fast spoiled gradient-recalled acquisition in the steady state pulse sequence was used to obtain axial images to assess the peroneal tendons during different positions of the ankle. Seven asymptomatic volunteers and five patients with suspected peroneal tendon subluxation were studied. There was no transverse displacement of the peroneal tendons observed in the asymptomatic subjects nor in two of the patients. Two patients had peroneal tendon subluxation observed on the kinematic MRI studies, and one patient had the peroneal tendons maintained in a displaced position in all ankle positions. The preliminary results suggest that kinematic MRI of the ankle is a potentially useful technique to facilitate evaluation of patients with suspected subluxation of the peroneal tendons, particularly in instances in which subluxation is position-dependent, and spontaneous reduction of the tendons may occur.
PMID: 9090608 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
19. Br J Cancer. 1996 Sep;74(6):871-3.
Reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction for prostate-specific antigen may be a prognostic indicator in breast cancer.
Lehrer S(1), Terk M, Piccoli SP, Song HK, Lavagnini P, Luderer AA.
Author information:
(1)Department of Radiation Oncology, Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York, USA.
Among women with node-negative breast cancer and small tumours, it is important to identify those with tumours that will recur, so that they may receive adjuvant therapy, while sparing those with tumours that will not recur the hazards of adjuvant treatment. A reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) for prostate-specific antigen (PSA) may be used to identify circulating metastatic cells in patients with prostate cancer. Approximately 30% of breast cancer cells also produce PSA. Therefore, we tested the PSA RT-PCR assay on blood specimens from women with breast cancer. We evaluated 78 women at Mount Sinai Medical Center with histologically confirmed breast cancer. Venous blood (5 cm3) from the women was collected in ethylene diaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA)-treated collection tubes and approximately 400 ng of RNA from each sample was subjected to an RT-PCR. We were able to detect the amplified PSA fragment in 18 of 78 women with breast cancer; 7 of the 18 women with the PSA fragment had localised, small, node-negative tumours, both oestrogen receptor (ER) positive and ER negative. We could not detect the amplified PSA fragment in 20 normal women and 22 normal men. We conclude that PSA RT-PCR may be a useful method for determining the presence of circulating metastatic cells in some women with node-negative breast cancer, and therefore the potential for these women to develop recurrent disease and thus benefit from adjuvant therapy.
PMCID: PMC2074722
PMID: 8826851 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Radiation with or without Antiandrogen Therapy in Recurrent Prostate Cancer
William U. Shipley, M.D., Wendy Seiferheld, M.S., Himanshu R. Lukka, M.D., Pierre P. Major, M.D., Niall M. Heney, M.D., David J. Grignon, M.D., Oliver Sartor, M.D., Maltibehn P. Patel, M.D., Jean-Paul Bahary, M.D., Anthony L. Zietman, M.D., Thomas M. Pisansky, M.D., Kenneth L. Zeitzer, M.D., Colleen A.F. Lawton, M.D., Felix Y. Feng, M.D., Richard D. Lovett, M.D., Alexander G. Balogh, M.D., Luis Souhami, M.D., Seth A. Rosenthal, M.D., Kevin J. Kerlin, M.D., James J. Dignam, Ph.D., Stephanie L. Pugh, Ph.D., and Howard M. Sandler, M.D., for the NRG Oncology RTOG*
N Engl J Med 2017; 376:417-428February 2, 2017DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1607529
Salvage radiation therapy is often necessary in men who have undergone radical prostatectomy and have evidence of prostate-cancer recurrence signaled by a persistently or recurrently elevated prostate-specific antigen (PSA) level. Whether antiandrogen therapy with radiation therapy will further improve cancer control and prolong overall survival is unknown.
In a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial conducted from 1998 through 2003, we assigned 760 eligible patients who had undergone prostatectomy with a lymphadenectomy and had disease, as assessed on pathological testing, with a tumor stage of T2 (confined to the prostate but with a positive surgical margin) or T3 (with histologic extension beyond the prostatic capsule), no nodal involvement, and a detectable PSA level of 0.2 to 4.0 ng per milliliter to undergo radiation therapy and receive either antiandrogen therapy (24 months of bicalutamide at a dose of 150 mg daily) or daily placebo tablets during and after radiation therapy. The primary end point was the rate of overall survival.
The median follow-up among the surviving patients was 13 years. The actuarial rate of overall survival at 12 years was 76.3% in the bicalutamide group, as compared with 71.3% in the placebo group (hazard ratio for death, 0.77; 95% confidence interval, 0.59 to 0.99; P=0.04). The 12-year incidence of death from prostate cancer, as assessed by means of central review, was 5.8% in the bicalutamide group, as compared with 13.4% in the placebo group (P<0.001). The cumulative incidence of metastatic prostate cancer at 12 years was 14.5% in the bicalutamide group, as compared with 23.0% in the placebo group (P=0.005). The incidence of late adverse events associated with radiation therapy was similar in the two groups. Gynecomastia was recorded in 69.7% of the patients in the bicalutamide group, as compared with 10.9% of those in the placebo group (P<0.001).
The addition of 24 months of antiandrogen therapy with daily bicalutamide to salvage radiation therapy resulted in significantly higher rates of long-term overall survival and lower incidences of metastatic prostate cancer and death from prostate cancer than radiation therapy plus placebo. (Funded by the National Cancer Institute and AstraZeneca; RTOG 9601 ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00002874.) 

ASCENDE-RT*: A multicenter, randomized trial of dose-escalated external beam radiation therapy (EBRT-B) versus low-dose-rate brachytherapy (LDR-B) for men with unfavorable-risk localized prostate cancer.
2015 Genitourinary Cancers Symposium
J Clin Oncol 33, 2015 (suppl 7; abstr 3)
W. James Morris, Scott Tyldesley, Howard H Pai, Ross Halperin, Michael R. McKenzie, Graeme Duncan, Gerard Morton, Nevin Murray, Jeremy Hamm; BC Cancer Agency, Vancouver, BC, Canada; BC Cancer Agency, Victoria, BC, Canada; Odette Cancer Centre, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada; Vancouver Cancer Centre, British Columbia Cancer Agency, Vancouver, BC, Canada; BC Cancer Research Centre, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Background: This trial compared the efficacy of DE-EBRT and LDR-B for National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) high and intermediate-risk disease. Methods: A planned sample size of 400 patients were randomized to one of two treatment arms and stratified by risk group. Both arms received 12 months of androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) with luteinizing hormone releasing hormone (LHRH) agonist plus a non-steroidal anti-androgen for at least 1 month. After 8 months of neo-adjuvant ADT, both arms received whole pelvis EBRT (46Gy/23#). Patients assigned to DE-EBRT (standard arm) then received a conformal EBRT boost (32Gy/16#). Patients assigned to LDR-B (experimental arm) received an Iodine-125 LDR boost prescribed to a minimum peripheral dose of 115Gy. The primary endpoint was relapse free survival (RFS) defined by biochemical criteria using the nadir+2 ng/mL threshold. Time zero was the date of the first LHRH injection. Results: Between Dec 2002 and Sep 2011, 276 high-risk and 122 intermediate-risk patients were accrued at 6 cancer treatment centers. 200 men were assigned to DE-EBRT and 198 to LDR-B. The treatment arms were well balanced in terms of age and known prognostic factors. Median follow up (FU) is 6.5 years; 65 men have >9 years FU. There were 12 major protocol violations in each arm. By intent-to-treat analysis, the 3-, 5-, 7-, and 9-year Kaplan-Meier RFS estimates are 94% vs 94%, 77% vs 89%, 71% vs 86%, and 63% vs 83% for DE-EBRT and LDR-B respectively (hazard ratio = 0.473; 95% CI 0.292 – 0.765; P = 0.0022). Randomization (p<0.001), percent positive cores (p=0.005), initial PSA (p=0.006) and clinical T-stage (p=0.013) were predictive of RFS in a multivariable Cox model. The median PSA at latest FU for non-relapsing patients assigned to LDR-B is 0.02 vs 0.24 ng/mL for DE-EBRT. Conclusions: In a randomized trial, an Iodine-125 LDR boost was much more effective than an EBRT boost in rendering unfavorable-risk prostate cancer patients biochemically disease free. *ASCENDE-RT- Androgen Suppression Combined with Elective Nodal and Dose Escalated Radiation Therapy is an NCI registered trial (NCT00175396). Clinical trial information: NCT00175396 

Back to top