While penile shortening after prostate cancer surgery (radical prostatectomy) has been documented previously, researchers say that the same effect sometimes also occurs after androgen suppression and radiation treatment. The report, in Clinical Practice Urology, suggests that as with surgery, doctors should warn patients of the potential penile pitfalls of non-surgical treatments as well.
Conducted by researchers at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, the new study adds to the body of research regarding the limitations of non-surgical prostate cancer treatments.
Past studies found penile deformities and dimensional changes following radical prostatectomy in as many as 48 percent of men. And while nearly half the men who underwent surgery experienced considerable penile shortening, as many as 41 percent also developed penile fibrotic changes as a consequence of the surgery.
Besides these changes to the penis, evidence also exists on the microscopic level that penile fibrosis might occur to some extent in all individuals who undergo radical prostatectomy.
Now, the new study raises concerns about dimensional changes occurring after non-surgical prostate cancer treatment as well. The researchers behind the study suggest that the same management approach as used with surgical patients might well be broadened to include non-surgical forms of prostate cancer treatment.
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Source: Nature Clinical Practice Urology