By David Scharfel | January 12, 2019 12:18:05With the number of metastatic breast and lung cancers skyrocketing, new research from the University of Chicago suggests that more advanced metastatic cancers are more likely to be diagnosed than their more common counterparts.
According to the research, which is published in the journal PLOS One, a small subset of advanced prostate cancer patients had higher rates of advanced disease compared to their less advanced counterparts.
“The data suggest that in the more advanced prostate patients, early detection and aggressive treatment are more effective than treatment that continues to delay detection,” said Dr. David Schaufel, the study’s lead author.
The new study is part of a larger research effort that looks at the effect of a variety of different types of cancer treatment, from radiation therapy to chemo to chemotherapy.
“We don’t know what the optimal course of treatment for each patient is,” said study author Dr. Paul K. Gershman, an assistant professor of radiology and director of the Northwestern University Comprehensive Cancer Center.
“But this study shows that a combination of both chemo and radiation therapy is probably the most efficient.”
While most advanced prostate cancers are diagnosed after their diagnosis, some cancers can be diagnosed before they become invasive.
In those cases, treatment delays the progression of the disease and can result in patients needing more aggressive and expensive treatments, said Gershoman.
Gershmann and his colleagues compared a group of 2,942 men with advanced prostate and a similar group of 3,543 men with less advanced prostate who were all in their 50s and 60s, as well as 1,981 men with prostate cancer and 1,058 men with no cancer.
In addition, the men with metastatic cancer had more advanced disease, had higher risk factors for developing cancer, had fewer cancer-specific tests and had more aggressive treatments.
Researchers compared their prostate cancer results with those of the men without metastatic disease and found that those with more advanced cancer had significantly more advanced tumors.
“Our results suggest that the aggressive treatment that begins as early as stage IV of the prostate cancer progression may be an important strategy for the prevention of advanced cancer in the metastatic state,” said Gorshman.
Gershom noted that many doctors will only recommend aggressive treatment for the men who have been diagnosed and are now more likely than their less aggressive peers to have stage IV or stage V tumors.
“It’s really important to look at the treatment before diagnosis,” said Schaufiel.
“It’s important to recognize that if the cancer is advanced and the cancer has metastasized, you can’t wait until stage IV.
The treatment is a necessity.
The more advanced the cancer, the more likely it is that it’s metastasizing to the bone.”
While it’s not possible to know if the aggressive approach works, the data suggests it is more effective at delaying disease progression and reducing the likelihood of metastasization.
“There’s no doubt that this is an important research project,” said lead author Drs.
Paul Fuchs and Mark F. Tumlinson, of the University Health Network.
“We hope it will help inform our understanding of how to prevent metastatic and invasive prostate cancer.”
For more on prostate cancer, see: