Patient Information

This section of the website is primarily for men who have been diagnosed with localised prostate cancer, and their partners or the people who look after them. Localised prostate cancer means that the cancer has not spread outside the prostate gland.

Here, you will find information on low dose-rate (LDR) prostate brachytherapy, a treatment you might choose if you have localised prostate cancer.

We hope that these pages will provide you with a good level of information to help you find out if LDR brachytherapy is right for you. The information should also help you to discuss LDR brachytherapy as a possible treatment choice with your partner, general practitioner, specialist, or the prostate cancer treatment team at your hospital.

What is LDR brachytherapy?

Low dose-rate (LDR) brachytherapy is a type of internal radiation therapy that delivers radiation at a low dose-rate from implants placed permanently in the prostate.

Brachytherapy is a type of radiotherapy, or radiation treatment. Radiotherapy uses gamma- or x-rays to treat cancer. The radiation involved is much stronger than that used for an ordinary x-ray picture. There are two types of brachytherapy – high dose-rate (HDR) and low dose-rate (LDR). LDR brachytherapy is the type that is most commonly used to treat prostate cancer; it may sometimes be referred to as ‘seed implantation’.

We hope that these pages will provide you with a good level of information about LDR Brachytherapy. Click here to find out more about brachytherapy including; clinics, treatment process, possible side effects, aftercare and recovery process.

Treatment Information

LDR brachytherapy uses radioactive seeds bound together in short rows and permanently implants them into the prostate. These pellets emit low levels of radiation for several weeks. When this radiation treatment ends, the harmless seeds are left in place permanently. 

Primarily used to treat prostate cancer, LDR brachytherapy is a one-time procedure. The procedure itself generally takes about an hour.

Brachytherapy offers a quicker, more effective type of radiation treatment for some patients. Depending on the type and stage of cancer, brachytherapy may be combined with other treatments, which can vary treatment times. 

Access To LDR brachytherapy

If you think brachytherapy might be the right treatment for you, please get in touch with your local GP to find out the location of your nearest brachytherapy unit. They will then assist in helping you or your loved ones in finding out whether brachytherapy is, in fact, an option in your specific circumstances, and if so, assist you in accessing the treatment you need.

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