These stories are horrifying. While I believe they don't represent the majority of all RT procedures which have measurable successes, considering individual circumstances, this does happen. Sometimes, you know of someone that has had a bad experience...
A very good friend of mine passed away due to (metastasis of) squamous cell carcinoma in his left sinus cavity...not too long ago.
For him, it started out as a consistently stuffed up sinus. After some time, and I think it may have been too advanced by this time, the cancer was diagnosed. He underwent extensive RT treatment. They had to graft skin from his left arm to cover the damaged skin on the left side of his face. The RT was so aggressive that the bone mass around his left eye was softened and damaged, they had to remove his left eye. Subsequently, he lost all his teeth, had little salivary action and couldn't even eat properly. He suffered a great deal until his death. They suspect the initial treatments were mis-calibrated and delivered improperly. Not a great statement for his widow, children and grandchildren to hear.
We had known each other very well since we were 15. He stood up with me at my wedding.
-Nov/Dec 07, March 08 and Dec 08: Severe perineum pain . Septra/Bactrim for 8 months for diagnosed prostatitis.
-PSA start of 2008: 5.3..... PSA June of 2008: 7.3
-14 DRE all benign or nothing felt
-TRUS Biopsy Nov 08: 5 of 8 cores positive GS 3+3 or 6. 30-65%. Perineural invasion.
-General Health: pretty good, 5' 10", 180 lbs, slim.
-Open RP surgery: May 09 both nerve bundles spared. Bilateral lymph node dissection performed. Discharged 48 hours after surgery.
-Post Surgery Pathology: pT3a N0 MX, extraprostatic extension (EPE), stage III prostate cancer, lymph nodes clear, seminal vesicles clear, Gleason upraded to 3+4 GS 7. EPE within surgical margins. Other than prostate and EPE, all tissue removed negative for cancer involvement.
-Bladder control within 48 hours of catheter removal
-ED ongoing but improving significantly with Trimix at 7 months post-op. Oral ED meds didn't do much.