Men who have decided to have radiation as their first (primary) treatment for prostate cancer have a one-third chance of recurrence. Some of those men have salvage radical prostatectomy (SRP)  to fight the recurrence.  A study shows this might be a good idea.

Antoni Vilaseca, MD, etal from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, studied 251 men who had a Salvage Radical Prostatectomy (SRP) after they failed their primary treatment with external beam radiation therapy, brachytherapy (seeds), or with both.

The researchers evaluated long-term oncologic outcomes (survival and disease progression) of the SRP in general as well as evaluating if using minimally invasive surgery (MIS or laparoscopic surgery) can reduce the incidence of bladder neck contracture (BNC – developing scar tissue at the junction of the bladder outlet and the prostate), a common side effect of salvage surgery.

They found that the SRP patients’ 5- and 10-year cancer-specific survival rates were 92% and 78%, respectively, and the 5- and 10-year overall survival rates were 87% and 64%, respectively.

They also found that the 1- and 3-year bladder neck contracture-free (BNC) survival rates were 81% and 73%, respectively. They concluded that the men who underwent minimally invasive surgery had significantly better BNC-free survival compared with those who had open surgery.

They concluded that Salvage Radical Prostatectomy offers good long-term oncologic outcomes for men who experience recurrence of their prostate cancer after radiotherapy. They also determined that minimally invasive salvage surgery decreased the risk for developing bladder neck contractures.