Dr. Mason Discusses the PROTECT Study in Localized Prostate Cancer

January 18, 2018
Malcom Mason, MD

Malcom Mason, MD, Cancer Research Wales Professor of Clinical Oncology at Cardiff University, discusses the significance of the PROTECT study in patients with localized prostate cancer.<br /> &#8203;

Malcom Mason, MD, Cancer Research Wales Professor of Clinical Oncology at Cardiff University, discusses the significance of the PROTECT study in patients with localized prostate cancer.

Astonishingly, after a median follow-up of 10 years, the prostate cancer mortality rate, which was the primary endpoint of the study, was only 1%, Mason says.

Digging a little deeper, Mason says, the overall mortality was only 10% at 10 years. But, if you look at clinical disease progression, there was a difference. Curative treatments, including surgery or radiotherapy, do reduce the likelihood of disease progression by about half. That is a big effect, however, this is a phenomenon that only affects a minority of men, Mason says.

The results of PROTECT should not be used as an argument to say we should not be treating men with deferred treatment, as most men do not require treatment. However, whether or not it is right to defer treatment for an individual man depends on the patient’s perception of the risk of disease progression versus the side effects of immediate treatment with surgery or radiotherapy.