Seed radiation treatment Information needed

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New Member

Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 2/27/2007 11:49 PM (GMT -6)   
I have set up for surgery but the more I read about the seed radiation treatment the more interested I become.  I am in the early stages according to my doctors.  Has anyone gone through that seed program?

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 686
   Posted 2/28/2007 10:56 AM (GMT -6)   

Welcome Esperanza

There are several posts on the "seed therapy".  It is often referred to as seed implantation and of course "Brachytherapy".  You may have already read some of the brachytherapy posts that are on this page. You can also do a google search for more information.  I noticed one site  that appears to have a lot on information

If you share more details of where you are in your diagnosis and treatment, I  am sure that you will get lots of support and information.

Da Vinci surgery 1/16/07
psa 11/05 (2.9)
psa 7/06 (6.7)
biopsy 10/16/06
Gleason 4+4=8
grade T2A
post op pathology- OK
age-65 going on 29

Post Edited (lifeguyd) : 2/28/2007 8:57:54 AM (GMT-7)

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 355
   Posted 2/28/2007 3:18 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello Esperanza:
My husband has undergone Brachytherapy and I have posted under JustJulie's Brachytherapy Journey - there's lots of information in there but if you still need to know more, post and I'll answer anything I can.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 1732
   Posted 2/28/2007 5:54 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Julie,
You are so quiet...then someone needs all your wonderful information. I'm so glad you're here :>)

There is a whole lot of information thanks to Julie and her DH. Hope it helps. Hope the rest of the group can be of some additional support too. Welcome aboard.


New Member

Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 2/28/2007 11:24 PM (GMT -6)   
JustJulie, thanks for your informaation. I have done a great deal of reading but my doctor felels surgery is best. I ahve a telephone appointment withthe settleprostate center tomorrow to ask tehm questions. I am in my late 50's and my pSA and Gleason scores are law so I am in my early stages. Did ou go to Seattle which seems to be the predominant player in Brachytherapy?

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 2542
   Posted 2/28/2007 11:36 PM (GMT -6)   

Hi  ~ Esperanza  & Loved Ones,


              A   “Special”  Warm Welcome  to  You!   yeah  


I know we can “all” make Your Journey smoother just by being here for you! 

This is truly a great forum!!! ~ You have joined! You are now part our forum family ~ a group of wonderful individuals who are so willing to share their journey with you! 


It helps “all of us” ~ to help you ~ if we know where you are on your path.

So ~ Please stay with us and take our hand when you need it!  Keep posting.... OKAY!!   We are all here to help you travel the path with prostate cancer. 



KNOWLEDGE IS POWER... and POWER conquers fear


~ and ~

Your decision will be the right decision for you!!!



We invite you to visit our personal thread in the signature area below.

Our thoughts and prayers will be with you as you continue to search for answers.


In Friendship ~ Lee & Buddy


“God Bless You”


It's a little prayer  ~  "God Bless You"

...but it means so much each day,

It means may angels guard you

and guide you on your way.



(Direct Link ~ just click on the title below and a new window will open!  

Reminder … click on the REFRESH icon once you get there)

Helpful Hints for New Members... Hope this helps you! :)

mama bluebird - Lee & Buddy… from North Carolina

Link to our personal journey…>>>     Our Journey ~ Sharing is Caring 

April 3, 2006  53 on surgery day

RRP / Radical Retropubic Prostatectomy with "wide excision"

PSA 4.6   Gleason  3+3=6    T2a   Confined to Prostate

2nd PSA 02-06-2007 Less than 0.1 Non-Detectable :)

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 444
   Posted 3/1/2007 11:24 PM (GMT -6)   
Dear Esperanza

Let me give you my indirect knowledge of brachytherapy or radiative seed implants into the prostate. I suggest that you read the section of Dr. Peter Scardino's book on prostate cancer that relates to seed implants. he is one of the top open or radical prostate surgeons in the U.S. at Sloan-Kettering in New York City. while one might consider him biased because he is an expert surgeon, I took to heart his somewhat negative thoughts on seed implants (notwithstanding that they do many seed implants at Sloan-Kettering)

from what i have read, among the dangers of seed implants is that they can migrate to other areas of the body. moreover, it seems that a lot of seed implant patients have urinary complications, in particular, because the seed implants are close to the urinary tract which passes through the prostate. i talked to one patient recently who had seed implants in the summer of 2006 followed by some x-ray radiation treatments. he told me that he was unable to urinate (complete blockage of the urinary tract) and he had to be treated to relieve the condition which appeared to be related to the seed implants and not the x-ray radiation.

this is not to say that some seed implant patients have not had good experiences. the key is often getting the best expert doctor you can find for a particular PC treatment. were you referring to the Seattle Prostate Institute in Seattle? i believe that they are considered among the top experts in brachytherapy. the former mayor of new york, rudy guiliani, had seed implants a few years ago and he seems to be doing fine based on his current aspirations to run for president! i believe that he was treated by Dr. Richard Stock at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City, who has a good reputation for the seed implants. refer to this website which lists some of the top doctors who treat PC by type of treatment ( a few doctors at the Seattle Prostate Institute are included in the list.

my suggestion would be to talk to many patients who have had seed implants fairly recently to a few years ago, to see how they have fared. take a look at the (you are not alone) website, where many prostate cancer patients have posted their journey with PC whether it be surgery, seed implants or some form of beam radiation treatment. their stories are very interesting and informative--in most cases they give their e-mail address so that you can contact them. all the best.

68, Biopsy 9/27/06, Stage T1c, PSA 7.1, Gleason 6 [less than 5% in two areas], Gleason 7 (3+4) [less than 20% in third area], negative DRE, bone scan and MRI. Starting proton radiation therapy 2/22/07.

Post Edited (pcdave) : 3/1/2007 9:47:31 PM (GMT-7)

New Member

Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 3/2/2007 4:26 PM (GMT -6)   
Sorry to hear of your problem. I am about 5 weeks out from seed implants. I will say that I never even considered surgery as an option. I did a lot of reading on it and checked out the different types of operations. My url. is know as an agressive surgen and he didn't even bring it up. I was a 2.36 PSA, Gleason-6, t1, 2 of 12 cores positive. You will find that of all you read and hear from people you and only you will be able to make your choice. My main concern is quality of life, not lenght. I'm 58 and in pretty good health other thatn the pca. I talked to a few people who have had the seeds prior to making my choice. Just take your time try to digest the info you get and make your choice. Good luck in whatever you decide.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 528
   Posted 3/2/2007 6:40 PM (GMT -6)   

Two points:
1. "but my doctor felels surgery is best. " If (s)he is a urologist (and, therefore most likely a surgeon), (s)he has a biased view re: surgery vs. other options.

2. You talk about "seed implants" - are you aware of the other type of brachytherapy called HDR (high dose rate) brachytherapy?


New Member

Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 3/4/2007 6:03 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks to all of you for the information. I am 57 , PSA 1.5, Gleason 5 so I am in the very early stages. I have looked at over 20 articles and varous web sites. I am currently reviewing this with the Seattle Prostate Instiute. I wll look at the various sites you all mentioned. I am getting a list of patients who have had this to get their inputs. Thanks again

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 355
   Posted 3/5/2007 12:14 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey Esperanza
Sorry for my late response.  My husband was only 44 when diagnosed.  His PSA was 3.74 and he opted for Brachytherapy because the location of the tumour posed problems - namely if they cut too wide, he'd be left incontinent, if they cut moderately, they could split the tumour and leave some in.  He did not like the options so he went with Brachytherapy which is yielding the same results as surgery at this point.
We used Toronto's Princess Margaret Hospital - WONDERFUL experience there.  I have to mention that my husband has had NONE of the serious side effects mentioned - no urinary blockage, no erectile disfunction, no bowel issues (other than some inflamed hemmoroids) and no loss of appetite or irritable food issues so maybe we were lucky, maybe we were blessed with a great surgeon, I don't know, I'm just thankful.
If you need to know anything else, just holler, I'm happy to help.  Every doctor we saw thought their procedure was best.  What it boils down to is do what YOU feel most comfortable with and don't look back - best wishes to you.

New Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 3/28/2007 3:50 PM (GMT -6)   
Dear Julie,
Puzzled  how did they know of the locatation of the tumor.  Is this found out by a cat scan.  Eddie is scheduled for4/3/07.
All the doctors we have seen keep bring up that his prostate is small.  I read that this would effect how many seed can be implanted

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 355
   Posted 3/29/2007 10:06 AM (GMT -6)   

Hello, it's just me stopping in again ...

Yes, my husband had a number of test to determine the location of the tumour including x-rays and an MRI.  It is apparently easier to remove a tumour in the middle of the prostate as you can don't have to worry so much about splitting a tumour in the removal - we didn't have a clear path for removal so we opted for Brachytherapy and have been pleased with the results.

My husband had a 91-seed implant, the man beside him a 102-seed implant.  Rated out of 100, his score was 97 for placement of the seeds.



Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 400
   Posted 3/29/2007 1:21 PM (GMT -6)   


If you are considering a radiation treatment instead of surgery you might want to research proton.


Diagnosed Feb 2001  (Age 65)  Currently 71
PSA 4.8
Gleason 3 + 3 = 6
Completed Proton therapy @ Loma Linda - Aug 2001
5yr PSA   0.17
Have had no side effects.

New Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 4/14/2007 8:12 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Esperanza, I noticed your question in regard to Seed Implant. I just wanted to add a few thoughts. I am also considering Seed Implant as I have been told that I qualify.
T1c, G of 3+3(6), Localized to left, psa of 10, age 74 and currently watching. Dre is normal. Size is approx 40.

I have found three types of Seeds, Iodine -125, Palladium -103, and Cesium -131. The last, Cesium was developed in Washington state and approved in US by FDA in 2004 but only a few clinics are licensed so far. All three are approved by Medicare and consequently most insurance plans.

What I have found interesting is the facts presented in regard to the Half Life of the Radiation. I want to believe that the shorter the Half Life, the quicker the total effect of the radiation will be over and out of the body. The half life of Cesium is less than 10 days, Palladium is 17 days, and Iodine is about 60 days.

From what I have found they are almost identical in treatment. One area to ask about is Hot Spots, ie some spots get over 100 % of treatment and some spots get less. What i read is that Cesium and Iodine is the stronger of the three. Iodine has been the most used.

Another point to consider is the method of treatment planning. Some clinics have developed improved techniques to place the seeds more accurately. One site that I am aware of calls it "Interoperative Seed Tracking". In addition, the mapping of the prostate is done just before the procedure and not a day or week before to maintain the most accurate placement.

I am still doing research on seed implants, the one thing that i like about the procedure is that it takes about 4 hours and it is a one time affair.
Hope this helps. If not let me know. I need all the thoughts that i can get to improve my thought process, I am running out of questions to ask or look into .

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 355
   Posted 4/23/2007 8:05 AM (GMT -6)   
You are correct that new, more accurate seeding techniques are being developed.  My husband participated in one such study.  His seeds were "stranded" meaning they we standed together like pearls so there was (a) better alignment to better cover the area and (b) less change of migration of stray or misplaced seeds.
Out of a score of 100 for seed placement, he rated 97!  It's worth asking if the facility you are considering does such a procedure.  I know for a fact that Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto does this procedure.

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 74
   Posted 4/24/2007 10:44 AM (GMT -6)   

My Oncologist was a Seed specialist and initially wanted to do seeds. He sure told me how good he was for 30 minutes. After 1 1/2 hours of getting my history of Prosatitus and the size and shape of my prostate he said I really was not a good candidate. I was glad as I'd heard of the seed migration and being radioactive for some time. I also considered hi-dose radiation where they use radioactive rods and they are placed next to the prostate, 2 different times and your done. sometimes followed up by IMRT. A good friend had those two and is cancer free after 4 years.

I ended up choosing Proton Beam Treatment At Loma Linda.


Diagnosed with a Gleason 4X3. 1 out of 7 samples, Left Side. DRE showed Normal. Psa gradually crept to 10. Dropped to 6.4 with Alt. suppliments.
Proton Beam Therapy at Loma Linda 11-06. PSA at 1 yr. 1.7.

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