The optimum treatment of prostate cancer recurrence following radiation therapy (RT) remains controversial due to the lack of long-term data.
Our aim was to review the survival of patients who underwent salvage cryotherapy to the prostate gland for biopsy-proven recurrent prostate cancer and establish prognostic indicators.
A retrospective analysis was performed on all patients undergoing salvage cryotherapy at an academic urology unit for biopsy-proven locally recurrent prostate cancer after RT from 1995 to 2004. Patients' preoperative, perioperative, and postoperative data were reviewed and recorded.
Two freeze-thaw cycles of transperineal cryotherapy were performed under transrectal ultrasound guidance by a single surgeon.
The primary outcome was survival. Secondary outcomes were disease-free survival (DFS), metastasis-free survival, and progression to androgen-deprivation therapy.
Of 187 patients, 176 had records available for follow-up (follow-up rate: 94%). Mean follow-up was 7.46 yr (range: 1-14 yr). Fifty-two patients were followed for >10 yr. DFS at 10 yr was 39%. Risk factors for recurrence were presalvage prostate-specific antigen (PSA), preradiation, and presalvage Gleason score. A PSA nadir >1.0 ng/dl was highly predictive of early recurrence.
Salvage cryotherapy led to an acceptable 10-yr DFS. Presalvage PSA and Gleason score were the best predictors of disease recurrence. A PSA nadir >1 ng/dl following cryotherapy indicated a poor prognosis, and recurrence of disease was universal in these patients.