Salvage low dose rate brachytherapy for prostate cancer recurrence following definitive external beam radiation therapy

William H. Smith, Jamie Cesaretti, Chih Peng Chin, Mitchell Terk, Richard G. Stock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Purpose: We sought to describe the safety and efficacy of salvage low dose rate (LDR) brachytherapy for local prostate cancer recurrence following definitive RT. Materials and methods: We included patients from two prospectively maintained institutional databases who underwent salvage LDR brachytherapy for biopsy confirmed intra-prostatic recurrence following primary RT. All patients were without evidence of metastatic disease. Freedom from biochemical failure (FFbF), prostate cancer specific survival (PCaSS), and overall survival (OS) were determined using the Kaplan–Meier estimates. Cox proportional hazard models were used to identify factors predictive of FFbF. Toxicity was graded by Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events (CTCAE) v5.0. Results: 108 patients were included. Median follow-up was 6.3 years. The 5- and 10-year actuarial survival outcomes were as follows: FFbF, 63.1% and 52.0%; PCaSS, 90.5% and 77.8%; OS, 80.9% and 56.7%. On multivariate modeling, increasing grade group (HR 1.41, 95% CI 1.02–1.95, p = 0.036) and initial PSA at diagnosis (HR 1.02, 95% CI 1.004–1.05, p = 0.022) were associated with worse FFbF. Grade 3 toxicity occurred in 16.7% of patients; including genitourinary events in 15.7% and gastrointestinal events in 2.8% of patients. IPSS scores increased following implant, peaking at 2 months (median IPSS 20, p = 0.002) and thereafter remaining elevated throughout follow-up. Conclusions: Salvage LDR brachytherapy is safe and efficacious, with acceptable grade 3+ toxicity and good biochemical control on long-term follow-up. Patients with higher grade group and higher PSA at initial diagnosis may be at increased risk for biochemical failure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)42-47
Number of pages6
JournalRadiotherapy and Oncology
StatePublished - Feb 2021


  • Low-dose-rate brachytherapy
  • Prostate cancer recurrence
  • Salvage brachytherapy


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