Brachytherapy is a minimally invasive procedure where tiny permanent radioactive seeds (about the size of a grain of rice) are implanted into the prostate where they irradiate the cancer from inside the gland. The implanted seeds are so small that they cause no mechanical discomfort and are left in place.
The procedure is performed in the hospital on an outpatient basis (no hospital stay). The procedure takes approximately 60-90 minutes, with a total hospital stay of 3-4 hours.
Before the Procedure:
- Medications: You will be given prescriptions for the following medications:
- Flomax 0.4mg 1 tab every evening starting a week before the procedure, and continue until the prescription is complete (90 tablets)
- Medrol Dose Pack take 6 tablets the night before the procedure; 5 tablets the day after the procedure, then decrease the amount of tablets by one everyday until all tablets are gone.
After the hospital:
- Catheter will be removed the following morning in Radiation Therapy office at the time of your CT scan.
- Dressing- none
- No heavy lifting (10 lbs) or strenuous activity for 2-3 days.
- May resume sexual activity 2 weeks
- Discomfort- you may experience some discomfort after the procedure, you will be given a prescription at the time of discharge from the hospital which is why you are taking the Medrol and Flomax.
- You may experience urinary difficulties such as frequency, burning and hematuria (blood in your urine) for a few weeks up to a few months.
- Although the seeds contain radioactive material, you are not radioactive, but you should avoid close contact with small children and pregnant women for the fist 2 months after treatment.
- Follow up appointment will be scheduled for 3 month after your procedure, with a PSA level drawn before your appointment. Please call the office if you are having difficulties.
Educational material about Radioactive Seed Implantation Brachytherapy