Radiotherapy for metastatic prostate cancer

You might have radiotherapy for prostate cancer that has spread to different parts of the body. This is metastatic or advanced prostate cancer.

Radiotherapy uses high energy waves similar to x-rays to destroy prostate cancer cells. You might have external beam radiotherapy or internal radiotherapy. External beam radiotherapy directs radiotherapy beams at the cancer from a machine. This is different to internal radiotherapy which means giving radiotherapy to the cancer from inside the body.

For metastatic prostate cancer, you might have a type of internal radiotherapy called Radium 223. Your doctor may also suggest you have a type of internal radiotherapy called Lutetium-177-PSMA. This is a new type of internal radiotherapy treatment. 

The aim of radiotherapy for metastatic prostate cancer is to shrink the cancer, relieve symptoms such as pain and help you feel more comfortable.

External radiotherapy for metastatic prostate cancer

You might have external radiotherapy for metastatic prostate cancer. This means using a machine outside the body to direct radiation beams at the cancer. 

Side effects of prostate cancer radiotherapy

Radiotherapy to the prostate can cause some side effects, such as loose or watery poo (diarrhoea) and passing urine more often.  

Radium 223 (Xofigo) for metastatic prostate cancer

Radium 223 is a type of internal radiotherapy. You might have it for cancer that began in the prostate and has spread to the bones.

Last reviewed: 
26 Jul 2022
Next review due: 
26 Jul 2025
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