Question about Brachytherapy MINOR side effects.

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 281
   Posted 7/13/2010 10:48 AM (GMT -6)   
The following is a copy of an email that I sent to one of our members who has received Brachytherapy but never got any response. Hope I did not violate some HW rule about asking such a question via direct email. Repeated the email to the recipient but again got no reply. Perhaps those emails got lost somewhere in cyberspace, so now I'll ask here on the forum and I did adjust the time element involved...... Any of our seed recipients care to comment on my question/concern? Thanks guys.

Quick question for you. I'm going on about eight weeks since my brachytherapy procedure and just wondering how long the average guy will feel some pressure when sitting down. When my butt first hits the seat, bed or what ever, that's the ONLY time I ever feel any effects of the seeding. There is absolutely NO pain or anything like pain, just a little pressure for the first couple seconds. I am aware of the fact that we are all different and the seeds affect each guy in a little different way but did you also have that sensation after the seeds are WELL situated (like almost two months). Thanks End quote.
erbob (Bob in So. CO)
Bob, located in Southern Colorado

Age 73 Retired Railroader.
Dx Jan 2010, Volume 51.345
Gleason 3+4=7, second opinion 4+3=7 (Don't know which to believe)
2.6 4/96.......... 3.7 4/07
1.9 5/97.......... 3.2 1/08
2.3 4/98.......... 6.1 4/09
2.2 10/99......... 5.3 5/09
2.4 8/00......... 5.3 8/09
2.3 6/01......... 6.9 10/09
2.9 2/03......... 7.3 12/09
3.6 4/04......... 6.1 1/10
3.0 5/05......... 5.0 3/10
4.7 4/06......... 0.7 5/10 (Lupron/Bicalutamide)
Volume study at CPCC (Westmont, IL) Feb 15, 2010 = 55.7cc
On Feb 15, 2010 put on 90 days of Bicalutamide
Got LHRH Lupron shot on Feb 29,2010
Another Volume study May 24, 2010 = in mid-40cc
BRACHYTHERAPY received May 26, 2010
Received 80 I-125 (Iodine seeds)
Activity per seed (mCi) 0.373
Total activity implanted (mCi)29.80
Measured exposure @ 3 feet (mR/hr) 0.06
Received the Brachytherapy at the Chicago Prostate Cancer Center from Dr. Brian Moran
Walked in the facilty and just a few hours later walked right out.
No after effects other than just a little sore from the needle sticks but NOT serious
enough to take ANY meds for pain.
PSA to be taken in three months (Aug 2010).

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 4049
   Posted 7/13/2010 11:08 AM (GMT -6)   

Hi Bob:

I 'fess up to being the guilty party that didn't answer his email.  I don't check the one listed on this forum very bad!

Anyway, I didn't have ANY pressure issues.  Some men talk about needing cushions when driving back from the procedure but I didn't even need that.  Maybe I've just got extra cushioning in my behind!  So, I'm no help on this except to suggest that you call your radiation oncologist and ask him/her about it.  Sorry not to be more help.

Tudpock (Jim)

Age 62, Gleason 3 + 4 = 7, T1C, PSA 4.2, 2 of 16 cores cancerous, 27cc
Brachytherapy December 9, 2008.  73 Iodine-125 seeds.  Procedure went great, catheter out before I went home, only minor discomfort.  Regular activities resumed, everything continues to function normally as of 4/10/10.  6 month PSA 1.4 and now 1 year PSA at 1.0.  My docs are "delighted"!

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 420
   Posted 7/13/2010 2:04 PM (GMT -6)   
I had minor pain and NO pressure for about a day and a half....also a little bleeding. After that, didn't feel a thing from the procedure. Main discomfort for me was the burning sensation during urination...but that was manageable and goes away over time. Like Jim suggested, I would at least ask about it. Regards,

Age -67 PSA - 4.5

Biopsy  (9/4/09) - Positive in 5 of 8 cores. In those 5 cores, 5 of 11 samples were positive. Gleason 3+3=6. Stage – T1C  Ct and Bone scans negative.


BT performed on 12/11/09. 84 seeds of Palladium 103. Surgery at 7:30 - Home at 12:30 same day with no catheter. Blood in urine for a week. Side effects as expected -  some burning, frequency, urgency.   Resumed daily  1 ½ mile walk after 3 days. 


BT followed with 25 IGRT treatments beginning Feb 15 (4500 Gy's). After third week, experienced some fatigue. Now 2 months from last rad treatment - energy level has returned. Burning gone and urgency is much improved.


First post treatment PSA (6/1/10) - 0.1


Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 104
   Posted 7/13/2010 2:38 PM (GMT -6)   
Bob, I'm only three weeks out but having similar problem. Will be interested in what your doc says.
Age 63

01/26/10 ...PSA 9....Referred to urologist
02/26/10 ...Met with urologist ...DRE normal but wanted to do biopsy
03/26/10 ...Biopsy done. 14 samples...3 positive on right side...all 11% Gleason 3+3
Urologist said stage T-1c.
Advised treatment. Said either surgery or radiation should work well.
4/26/10 Met with radiologist. Decided on Brachytherapy.
5/20/10 volume study done all looks good for Brachytherapy.
6/22/10 Brachytherapy done.
6/29/10 Not as quick a recovery as expected. Catheter in for a week. :>(

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 7187
   Posted 7/13/2010 7:17 PM (GMT -6)   
We exchanged emails. If you have an email you use more frequently and want to exchange emails, feel free to email me your better email address.
(Hope that made sense!)

63 years old . PSA-- 3/08--2.90; 8/09--4.01; 11/09--4.19 (Free PSA 24%),  after 45 days on cipro! DREs have always been normal. PCA-3 was about 75 (way above the 35 threshold). That led to:

Biopsy on 11/30/09. 5 out of 12 cores positive. Gleason 4+3. 2 cores were 3+3 (one 5% and the other 30%) on one side. On  other side:2 cores are 4+3 (5%)--1 core 3+4 (30%) no peri-neural invasion. prostate is 45 grams. Stage: T1C.  

Surgery with Dr. Menon at Ford Hospital, 1/26/10. He says all looked good. Spared nerves. Unfortunately: Pathology Report: G 4+3 (65%-35%). Cancer in 15% of gland. Lymph Nodes: Clear.  Perineural Invasion: yes. Seminal Vessical Involvement: No.  Extraprostatic Extension: yes.  Positive Margin: Yes-- focal-- 1 spot .5mm. Final Weight is 52.7 gms.  (Second opinion from Jon Epstein at Hopkins confirmed these results)

 Incontinence: joined that club-- definite leaks—1 pad/day. Night is dry, was  using 1 pad at night for security, but pretty much dispensed with that most nights. Update: no pads at night. No pads while at home, but still very uncomfortable. Use 1 pad for out-of-house activities. Suddenly got MUCH better on 3/10/10, almost overnight. Still some urgency but no pads about 90% of the time.  As of 3/12/10--completely continent! Uh...OH. As of about 3/16/10 problems with constant urgency although no pads needed--feels like an infection but none showing in urine.

Update: since late March all is well in that area. I would say 99.9% continent (a spurt here and there, maybe 5 spurts per week). As of 6/22/10, I would say I am 100% continent, but I do have (controllable) significant urgency.

First post-op PSA on 3/10/10--DRUM ROLL: 0.01 Next PSA in mid-June.

Second post-op PSA on 6/21/10--0.02--Not too bad!

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