In the advanced stage of prostate cancer, metastases appear in bones and distant organs. In such a situation, surgery is usually not indicated
Radiation therapy is carried out only for symptomatic purposes. Doctors try to control the disease with hormonal therapy and chemotherapy, but sooner or later medications become ineffective. In countries with a low level of medicine only symptomatic treatment is prescribed after this. If you undergo treatment in Germany, you can take advantage of novel methods that provide a stable long-term result, and in some cases even cure cancer. Lutetium-177 PSMA therapy in Germany demonstrates excellent results in men with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer.
The essence of the method
Advanced prostate cancer spreads throughout the body. It is not possible to remove all the metastases in bones, liver, lymph nodes, etc. Moreover, sometimes it is impossible even to find all of them, because radiation diagnostic methods detect only tumor foci that are at least a few millimeters in size.
But imagine that a drug is injected into your body; it finds all the tumors and metastases, and destroys them. It sounds unreal, but in Germany it has become a reality. Such drugs are already produced and used in clinical practice. This method of cancer treatment in Germany is called PSMA therapy or radiotargeted therapy.
Doctors inject a radiopharmaceutical into the patient’s body. A radiopharmaceutical consists of two types of molecules: ligands (protein molecules) and radioactive substances (usually this is Lutetium-177). Ligands deliver radionuclides to the tumor, and radioactive substances accumulate near malignant cells and destroy them by radiation.
Why does the radiopharmaceutical accumulate in malignant cells but not in healthy ones? This is because the ligands bind selectively to the prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA). PSMA is actively expressed in malignant cells; it is also present in healthy tissues of the prostate, albeit in a smaller amount; and in other tissues PSMA is absent or almost absent. Accumulating in the tumor and metastases, the radionuclide produces radiation that spreads over a distance of less than 2 mm. Therefore, it does not damage healthy tissues, but destroys malignant foci.
How the treatment is carried out
Before the start of the Lutetium treatment, a patient undergoes examination in order to determine if there are any contraindications, where the tumors are located, what size they are, and whether the malignant tissues are capable of accumulating the radiopharmaceutical (i.e. have PSMA on the surface).
The treatment itself involves a slow intravenous injection of a radiopharmaceutical. Then the person stays in the hospital for 3-4 days, as his body continues to release radioactive substances.
The procedure is repeated every 8 weeks. Usually, after the first injection, patients receive a partial response: the total size of the tumors is reduced by more than a third. After several injections, the tumors can shrink in size several times. A long-term remission is achieved, which can last for several years. In some patients tumors did not reappear even after the long-term follow-up.
Undergoing treatment in Germany
If you want to undergo cancer treatment in Germany, visit the Booking Health website. Here you will find the best clinics for Lutetium treatment in Germany, which have extensive experience and achieve excellent results. The website shows the current Lutetium-177 treatment prices, so you can choose the option that suits you. The Booking Health team will help you make the right choice and organize your trip to Germany.