Jul 12, 2011 - 3:30 pm
It is decision time, and the only two choices to make the cut so far are the combination of IMRT (IGRT)+ Brachytherapy or Proton Beam Therapy (PBT).
PBT looks so good and clean, and my insurance will cover it, but it is impossible to find more than one long-term cure rate study (which isn't that great) and long-term side effect information. The UF facility says they will probably be going to a 29 session therapy (from 39 sessions) now at an elevated dose of 2.5Gy per session. Loma Linda may be going to 3Gy per session! During my visit, they told me they have learned that the "cell kill rate is even better with fewer higher doses", and side effects remain quite low. PBT survivors are fans of the therapy unlike any others. I have spoken to many, and the stories and endorsements are way more positive any other therapy choice.
On the other hand, the IMRT+Brachytherapy guy (the well known John Sylvester) says he will publish a 99.1% long-term cure rate in the trade publication Cancer later this year. Wow!
I hoped a decsion would be more clear at this point, but it isn't. It may be that either decision is a good one.
By the way, my PSA has dropped to 3.5 from 3.96 in the last two months. No reason I can think of. The last DRE a week ago was negative still.
Wish me luck, and best wishes to all!