Colonic and anal sphincteric dysmotility after radiotherapy for prostate cancer
Gastrointestinal symptoms such as faecal urgency and incontinence develop in over 50% of patients who receive external beam radiotherapy for prostate cancer. These side effects continue indefinitely and their treatment is unsatisfactory because it is not clear where the radiotherapy damage occurs. This project aims to determine where the damage occurs by using a specially developed technique and how the damage can be reduced if not prevented by applying a commercially available but not fully tested device during radiotherapy. Addressing these research questions has the potential to dramatically improve the quality of life of the increasing number of survivors after radiotherapy for prostate cancer.
What we aim to achieve
Quality of life will be improved in the increasing number of survivors of radiotherapy for prostate cancer.
Our next steps and milestones
Funding from Cancer Council SA donors has been critical in generating the promising early results for this project. Further support beyond the 1 year funding received is needed in order for the translational benefits of the project to be realised.
What motivates me
I am motivated by the challenge of finding better treatments for cancer in general but particularly prostate cancer because of the potential of benefitting a greater number of patients.
My message to supporters
The techniques used in this research have been developed in South Australia. Ongoing funding is needed to confirm early findings which will translate to improved quality of life for the increasing numbers of patients surviving after radiotherapy for prostate cancer worldwide.