Limit Radiation in Certain Areas to Preserve Sexual Function in PCa

This article originally appeared here.
Researchers investigate sexual dysfunction post RT for localized prostate cancer.
Researchers investigate sexual dysfunction post RT for localized prostate cancer.

(HealthDay News) -- For long-term prostate cancer survivors, sexual dysfunction following radiation therapy (RT) can be classified into 3 symptom domains: erectile dysfunction, orgasmic dysfunction, and pain, and chances for intact sexual functionality may be increased if dose to the total penile structure can be restricted for these domains in the planning of RT. These findings were published online in The Journal of Sexual Medicine.

Maria Thor, PhD, from the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, and colleagues examined sexual dysfunction in 2 treated prostate cancer cohorts and in 1 non-pelvic-irradiated cohort. The men were prescribed primary/salvage external-beam RT. Absorbed RT doses (Dmean and Dmax) of the corpora cavernosa, penile bulb, and total penile structure were correlated with 13 patient-reported symptoms on sexual dysfunction.

The researchers found that across all cohorts, 3 distinct symptom domains were identified: erectile dysfunction (2 to 5 symptoms), orgasmic dysfunction (2 to 4 symptoms), and pain (2 to 3 symptoms). Corpora cavernosa + penile bulb Dmax was the strongest predictor for erectile dysfunction symptoms; prediction of orgasmic dysfunction was equally good for corpora cavernosa and penile bulb Dmean; and corpora cavernosa + penile bulb Dmean was the strongest predictor for pain symptoms.

"Chances for intact sexual functionality may be increased if dose to the total penile structure can be restricted for these domains in the planning of RT," the authors write.

Source

  1. Thor M, Olsson CE, Oh JH, et al. Radiation Dose to the Penile Structures and Patient-Reported Sexual Dysfunction in Long-Term Prostate Cancer Survivors. The Journal of Sexual Medicine. doi: 10.1111/jsm.13031.
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