Cryotherapy versus high-intensity focused ultrasound for treating prostate cancer: Oncological and functional results

The increasingly early diagnosis of prostate cancer requires a search for therapeutic alternatives with good oncological results that in turn facilitate a good long-term quality of life. This review analyses 2 minimally invasive therapies for treating localised prostate cancer in terms of oncological and functional results, as well as the complications resulting from the therapies.

A systematic literature review was conducted of the treatment of localised prostate cancer with 2 ablative techniques as the primary therapy: cryosurgery or cryotherapy and high intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU). We included patients who underwent procedures that included the entire gland, with hemiablation or focal therapy, which were indicated for low to intermediate-risk prostate cancer according to the D'Amico criteria. We excluded patients with high-risk prostate cancer and those who underwent any prior treatment for prostate cancer.

After conducting the literature search and excluding the studies that did not meet the protocol criteria, we reviewed a total of 14 studies, with a total of 350 patients treated using cryotherapy and 1107 treated with HIFU. All studies were either prospective or retrospective and were not randomised. The patients' mean age was younger than 75 years. Overall, the rate of disease recurrence in the patients treated with cryotherapy varied between 13.2% and 26%, while the rate for those treated with HIFU varied between 7.3% and 67.9%. The overall demonstrated continence at 12 months was 97.6-100% for cryotherapy and 96-100% for HIFU. In terms of sexual potency rates, cryotherapy showed complete potency at 12 months for 86-100% of the patients treated with focal cryotherapy and slightly lower rates for hemiablation (76.9-100%) and total therapy (39%). HIFU showed potency rates of 89%, 52-80% and 33-78% for focal therapy, hemiablation and total therapy, respectively.

Both techniques have comparable functional results, although the somewhat poorer oncological results for HIFU reflect a steeper learning curve, which could lead to its use in centres with high volumes of patients.

Actas urologicas espanolas. 2017 Aug 14 [Epub ahead of print]

F Donis Canet, M D Sánchez Gallego, F Arias Fúnez, G Duque Ruíz, I Laso, J Brasero Burgos, J Lorca Álvaro, V Gómez Dos Santos, R Rodríguez Patrón, F J Burgos Revilla

Departamento de Urología, Hospital Ramón y Cajal, Madrid, España. Electronic address: ., Departamento de Urología, Hospital Ramón y Cajal, Madrid, España.