NICE publishes guidance on focal HIFU for the treatment of localized prostate cancer in UK

In the UK, the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) has just published guidance on the use of focal forms of high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) for the treatment of (low- and intermediate-risk forms of) localized prostate cancer.

The core guidance from NICE states that

Current evidence on focal therapy using high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) for localised prostate cancer raises no major safety concerns. However, evidence on efficacy is limited in quantity and there is a concern that prostate cancer is commonly multifocal. Therefore, this procedure should only be used with special arrangements for clinical governance, consent and audit or research.

The report goes into detail about ways in which focal therapy can be appropriately applied at the time, which basically requires careful patient selection (of men in whom prostate cacner pathology appears to be limited, at worst, to a single lobe of the prostate) and close, detailed, and well-recorded follow-up of all patients treated with focal HIFU.

5 Responses

  1. I would like to know how I can receive this treatment if my consultant says I am a suitable patient. It does sound like the perfect treatment for me.

  2. Dear David:

    I have no idea what the exact procedures might be, but your urology consultant would be able to advise you. As far as I am aware there is a very small number of centers in the UK where focal HIFU is available — one being at University College London. You do need to understand that there are absolutely no good, long-term follow-up data on this form of treatment. See also this link to some very recent data from a team of highly experienced HIFU specialists in the UK.

  3. David,

    My urologist told me not to get HIFU. I did anyway, 3.5 years ago, and I am very happy I did, it was a piece of cake for me. I think the most important thing is to get the most experienced doctor to give it to you, and read all the instructions and follow the rules after treatment to a T. There are quite a few today, as they travel to Bermuda, Canada, Bahamas, Cabo san Lucas and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. And anywhere on Earth except the USA. I know a guy in the UK who had HIFU 11 years ago; he is doing great. I have several friends who also had it a few years ago, we are all happy. I know of a couple of guys who had to have it done again, but it still beats the heck of the alternative. I googled International HIFU and found Dr. Scionti. International HIFU books most of the doctors out of the country, and they do follow-up via mail. All I needed was my local nurse friend after the treatment to pull the catheter.

    Good luck.

  4. Dear Ron:

    David Whitmore lives in the UK.

  5. A woman called Thelma whose husband had HIFU in Belgium some dozen years ago loves to tell people about their experience. She writes on yananow; they live in the UK.

    They have sent many men at this point. You can get HIFU all over Europe. I recommend the Sonablate, as the Ablatherm procedure needs a TURP first. The less I get touched, the better. But Thelma’s husband had the Ablatherm.


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