SpaceOAR Hydrogel for Rectum-Sparing Prostate Radiation Therapy

 

Prostate cancer, rectum-sparing, radiation oncology for patients in Dallas, Plano, Carrollton, Frisco, McKinney, Richardson, Irving and surrounding North Texas communities.

If you have been diagnosed with prostate cancer and are concerned about accidental damage to the rectum that can be a side effect of radiation therapy, the use of a SpaceOAR Hydrogel rectal spacer can alleviate your concerns. The prostate cancer and radiation therapy specialists at North Dallas Radiation Oncology can help you determine if SpaceOAR Hydrogel can eliminate or reduce damage to your rectum and possibly enhance radiation treatment to the prostate by better targeting the cancer.

What is SpaceOAR Hydrogel Rectal Spacer?

When treating prostate cancer patients with radiation therapy, the goal is to destroy the cancer cells while avoiding damage to surrounding healthy tissue. SpaceOAR® Hydrogel Rectal Spacer is a temporary, injectable gel spacer placed between the prostate and the rectum that reduces damage to the rectum caused by radiation treatment. The North Texas communities of Dallas, Plano, Carrollton, Frisco, McKinney, Richardson, and Irving, TX can receive this treatment from the professionals at North Dallas Radiation Oncology.

What is radiation therapy and why would I need it?

Patients who are diagnosed with prostate cancer usually require radiation therapy to kill the cancer cells within the prostate. Radiation therapy is a type of non-invasive cancer treatment that uses high-energy rays or particles and is commonly used as a highly effective treatment for prostate cancer. There are some risks to radiation therapy however, including damage to the rectum due to its location just below the prostate. Damage to the area can cause bowel complications, bleeding and pain. SpaceOAR® Hydrogel can be used in conjunction with radiation treatments to lessen the impact of these possible side effects.

How is SpaceOAR® Hydrogel used?

SpaceOAR® is injected before the start of radiation treatment and is placed between the prostate and the rectum. This injection acts as a spacer, limiting the amount of radiation exposure to the rectum.  Placement of SpaceOAR® Hydrogel can be done as an outpatient procedure when a patient is awake or asleep under general anesthesia.

What are the benefits of SpaceOAR® Hydrogel?

When receiving radiation therapy, the goal is to maximize radiation therapy to the prostate while avoiding radiating surrounding normal tissue.  Due to the closeness of the prostate and the rectum, radiation therapy can accidentally cause damage to the rectum. SpaceOAR Hydrogel acts as a spacer designed to reduce the amount of radiation delivered to the rectum.  Benefits include:

  • Reducing or eliminating damage to the rectum
  • Enhances radiation treatment to the prostate by better targeting the cancer cells
  • Reduction in the number of radiation treatment sessions needed
  • Improvements in urinary function
  • Reduction of rectal toxicity resulting in improved bowel function
  • A higher likelihood to maintain sexual function when compared to those who did not receive SpaceOAR® Hydrogel

What is the SpaceOAR® made of?

SpaceOAR® Hydrogel is made mostly of water (90%) and of a non-toxic polyethylene glycol (PEG).  PEG is commonly used in both cosmetics and drugs because it is both non-toxic and well-tolerated by the body. PEG materials have had extensive biocompatibility testing and are used in a broad number of surgical settings including sealants used in the eye, brain and spine.

For prostate cancer and rectum-saving use, SpaceOAR® Hydrogel is injected as a liquid that, within seconds, solidifies.  This soft, gel-like material expands to create a rectum-sparing barrier between the prostate and the rectum.  Once placed, SpaceOAR® Hydrogel remains as a soft gel for about three months.  After three months, the gel begins to liquefy and by six months the hydrogel is naturally absorbed by the body and cleared via the urine.

Are there side effects or risks when using SpaceOAR® Hydrogel?

As with any medical procedure or device, there are possible risks involved. The doctors at North Dallas Radiation Oncology are happy to discuss any concerns and will explain the possible risks associated with the procedure. Some risks of the SpaceOAR Hydrogel may include:

  • Pain around the injection site
  • Pain or discomfort associated with SpaceOAR hydrogel
  • Needle penetration of the bladder, rectal wall, rectum, prostate, or urethra
  • Injection of SpaceOAR hydrogel into the prostate, rectal wall, rectum, bladder, or urethra
  • Local inflammatory reactions
  • Infection
  • Injection of air, fluid or SpaceOAR hydrogel intravascularly
  • Urinary retention
  • Rectal mucosal damage
  • Ulcers
  • Necrosis
  • Bleeding
  • Constipation
  • Rectal urgency

If you live in the North Texas communities of Dallas, Plano, Carrollton, Frisco, McKinney, Richardson, or Irving, TX and have been diagnosed with prostate cancer, or would like to get answers to your questions about prostate cancer treatment and/or SpaceOAR Hydrogel for Rectum-Sparing Prostate RadioTherapy, please contact the specialists at North Dallas Radiation Oncology.