Radical removal of the prostate with NanoKnife: “radical prostatectomy” with no radical side effects
NanoKnife IRE (Irreversible Electroporation) can be used not only for focal therapy of individual tumors in the prostate but also for the radical removal of the prostate in cases involving larger tumors and high Gleason scores. The difference is that there are none of the usual side effects of a standard radical prostatectomy.
At the Vitus Prostate Center, we have the most experience of any team in the world with complete ablation of the prostate with NanoKnife. Even with patients with large-volume carcinomas, we have always been able to completely avoid incontinence. As has been reported by Dr. Wang in Atlanta, erectile dysfunction occurred in some patients for six to eight months after a complete ablation, but then disappeared. However, in the case of advanced prostate carcinomas, the accompanying antihormone therapy that is often advisable itself leads to erectile dysfunction so that the side effect rate of IRE could possibly be overestimated.
A prostatectomy with NanoKnife is an important gentle alternative to complete ablation by means of an operation (DaVinci) or radiation. The treatment is concluded after 24 hours with no pain from a wound and no scars. There is no need for aftercare or rehabilitation.
Strengthened immune systems after IRE prostatectomies could increase life expectancy
Recent scientific studies have shown that after an IRE treatment, the body produces a stronger immune reaction to prostate cancer cells. Not only does the IRE remove the cancerous tissue from the prostate, the body's own immune system also destroys free cancer cells, whether in or near the area of treatment, in the nearby lymph nodes or in more distant areas of the body. In light of this secondary effect, it can be assumed that, after an IRE treatment of the prostate, fewer local recurrences and metastases occur. This in comparison to standard “radical” prostatectomies, which have a 30% rate of local recurrence.
For example, this 65-year-old man with stage T4b N3 prostate cancer. In the image on the left, an enlarged lymph node that shows all signs of malignancy can be seen very clearly. As early as nine days after the IRE treatment of the entire prostate, which was classified as palliative, the lymph node no longer shows any signs of malignancy (middle image). This lymph node (and all of the other lymph nodes not shown here) became significantly smaller. To this very day, there is no sign of a recurrence or bone metastases (right image). Hormone therapy for palliative use has not yet become necessary.