Trial offers new choice to some patients with metastatic prostate cancer

October 21, 2015 | by Denise Heady

For prostate cancer patients whose disease has spread to other parts of the body, treatment options are often limited.

City of Hope is working to change that. Already a nationally recognized leader in the research and treatment of prostate cancer, City of Hope’s prostate cancer team is now exploring – through a new clinical trial – the potential of robotic surgery for treating patients with metastatic prostate cancer.

“Metastatic prostate cancer is a difficult disease to treat, and there are no curative options,” said Bertram Yuh, M.D., assistant clinical professor of surgery in the Division of Urology and Urologic Oncology at City of Hope, who is leading the clinical trial. “Surgical treatment allows for removal of the bulk of the tumor, providing possibly better oncologic control and improvement in symptoms.”

Traditionally, patients with metastatic prostate cancer that has spread to the lymph nodes and/or bone, receive lifelong hormone treatments or chemotherapy, but not removal of the diseased prostate, due to the high level of expertise needed to perform these surgeries.

This new clinical trial will examine the use of robotic-assisted prostatectomy in patients with newly diagnosed metastatic prostate cancer.

“The current options available tend to only prolong survival,” said Yuh. “Most tumors become castrate-resistant at some point, and patients are often left with second- or third-line options. Also, patients can have debilitating symptoms from the prostate that is left in place. Along with current treatments, surgical removal has the potential to improve quality of life as well.”

The use of robotic-assisted prostatectomy to treat metastatic prostate cancer is not currently the standard practice, in part because very few centers have the technical expertise to perform such complicated operations. City of Hope has not only the expert physicians, but also other state-of-the-art treatments for advanced prostate cancer.

“The goal of this trial is to offer patients treatment above and beyond lifelong hormone treatments, chemotherapy and other medicines which may have survival and quality-of-life implications,” said Yuh. “City of Hope is already an expert in prostatectomy for localized cancer, but we are seeking to improve the care for patients with metastatic cancer as well. With this study and its associated molecular analyses, we’re hoping to provide data on surgical efficacy so more patients can benefit. “


Find out more about City of Hope's Prostate Cancer Program and learn more about our unique patient experience, how to make an appointment or get a second opinion. You may also request a new patient appointment online or call 800-826-HOPE (4673) for more information.

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