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Prostate Cancer Treatment Decision Information Background

A group of Radiotherapy Clinics of Georgia (RCOG) prostate cancer (PCa) patients developed this web site, in part, based on a slide presentation generated by a patient treated in 2002. Numerous updates have been made over the past eight years with the most recent late in 2014. Our goal was to make the treatment decision process easier for newly diagnosed patients by comparing average 10 year PCa disease free results and serious side effect results. Treatments with insufficient data and those not approved for use in the United States were not compared. PCa patients often use medical journals to help make their treatment decision so we simply grouped key data “on a level playing field” to support a better understanding of the primary alternatives.

The medical community publishes 10 year PCa treatment results based on either the American Society for Therapeutic Radiation and Oncology (ASTRO) measure, the Nadir+2 (Phoenix) measure or the most conservative 0.2 ng/ml and below measure. Unfortunately, these measurements shouldn’t be directly compared, which means that many patients are using inflated data to make their treatment comparison decision. A 2002 study by Johns Hopkins that compared average 10 and 15 year disease free ASTRO measurements with 0.2 ng/ml measurements found that the ASTRO measurements inflated disease free results by +17% and +32%. The Nadir+2 measure, which replaced the ASTRO measure a number of years ago has also been documented to inflate disease free results in a similar manner as the ASTRO measure.

A different source of comparison error is that on average some centers treat more serious PCa patients than others. This results in a slightly lower average disease free result for those centers. We have also compensated for this more subtle form of measurement bias using a PSA group distribution normalization approach. Since adjustments were made to published PCa treatment results this web site necessarily represents the opinion of the authors, although traceability to the published data is maintained for the reader.

Disclaimer: The information presented in this web site should not be considered to be medical advice. It contains a compilation of facts and opinions that were developed and updated over time by various PCa patients. This website has no formal or financial relationship to RCOG.

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