Fewer Treatments, Less Time, Excellent Outcomes 

An innovative approach to radiation treatment for prostate cancer

As a National Cancer Institute-designated cancer center, The University of Kansas Cancer Center offers the most advanced medical and surgical treatments for prostate cancer. This includes shorter-course radiation therapy for prostate cancer. 

Shorter-course radiation therapy, called stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT), involves delivering higher doses of radiation in fewer treatments. 

Typically, radiation therapy for prostate cancer takes eight to nine weeks to complete 40-45 treatments. With SBRT patients receive five treatments over a span of 1½ weeks. 

The innovative procedure dramatically reduces treatment time, is more manageable for patients and reduces the overall dose of radiation. 

In addition, side effects and cure rates are equal to or better than when compared to conventional treatment with image-guided radiation therapy and intensity modulated radiation therapy. The University of Kansas Cancer Center is the only cancer center in the region with the expertise to routinely offer this treatment. 

What is SBRT?
SBRT is a noninvasive form of radiation treatment that involves high-dose radiation beams. It can deliver precisely targeted radiation in fewer high-dose treatments than traditional therapy, which reduces the total dose of radiation to healthy tissue. In addition to prostate cancer, SBRT may be used to treat small, early-stage lung cancer and pancreatic cancer, or cancers that have spread to the lung, liver, adrenal gland or spine. 

What are the advantages of SBRT? 

  • Allows delivery of a higher dose of radiation with fewer treatments 
  • Shows outcomes that are equal to or better than conventional radiation therapy 
  • More convenient for patients and not as disruptive to their lives  
  • More cost effective 
  • Patients are screened to ensure they are FPO a candidate for the procedure 

What does the procedure involve?
SBRT is delivered through a linear accelerator, which forms beams of fast-moving subatomic particles. Radiation oncologists use a computerized system to shape the radiation beams to match a three-dimensional outline of the tumor. This outline is generated by an MRI scan, which is performed prior to the procedure. The radiation oncologist collaborates with medical physicists to design a treatment plan that allows the delivery of radiation that conforms to the specific dimensions of the tumor. Patients are awake and lying on a table during SBRT. SpaceOAR gel spacer is used to protect the rectum from radiation.  

Who can benefit from SBRT?
SBRT is offered to select patients who have low-, intermediate- and high-risk prostate cancer. In addition to prostate cancer, SBRT may be used to treat small, early-stage lung cancer and pancreatic cancer, or cancers that have spread to the lung, liver, adrenal gland or spine.  

How does SBRT differ from conventional radiation therapy? 
Conventional radiation is typically delivered in small doses each day over several weeks. This can delay or interfere with other cancer treatments, such as chemotherapy. By contrast, SBRT can usually be given in five or fewer daily sessions and requires no anesthesia. SBRT also can lead to better outcomes and fewer side effects than conventional radiation therapy.  

Does SBRT improve patient survival over conventional radiation therapy? 
SBRT has been used to treat prostate cancer for about 10 years. Researchers are still collecting data about the treatment’s long-term results compared to other forms of radiation therapy, but outcomes to date have been promising. Patients who have received SBRT have similar or better cancer control and side effects five and 10 years after treatment, compared to those who have had standard radiation therapy. 

Is SBRT done at all cancer centers? 
No. Currently, SBRT is offered at specialized cancer centers such as The University of Kansas Cancer Center, an NCI-designated cancer center.  

For more information
913-588-1227 | 844-323-1227
Physicians: 913-588-5862 | 877-588-5862