Supporting prostate cancer research

FIRE: A pilot study evaluating focal irreversible electroporation as treatment for participants with recurrent prostate cancer after radiotherapy.

Prof Phillip Stricker from St Vincent’s Prostate Cancer Centre, Darlinghurst, NSW.

Summary of project

The purpose of the study is to investigate the IRE (focal irreversible electroporation) procedure in a set of patients whose cancer has returned after initial radiation therapy. It will look at the safety profile, quality of life and cancer outcomes after the procedure.

In up to 35% of the patients that previously have been treated with radiation therapy for prostate cancer, the cancer will return. Most of these patients will go on to have either hormone treatment or have their prostate removed through surgery (radical prostatectomy). Unfortunately hormone treatment is non-curative and may cause significant side effects. Radical prostatectomy can be challenging and carries a high risk of side effects, especially in elderly patients with other health conditions. Minimally invasive treatments that only target the cancerous area in the prostate have now gained traction as evidence accumulates. To date, no literature on treatment of recurrent prostate cancer by IRE has been published and it is considered experimental. However, literature on IRE as primary treatment for prostate cancer shows encouraging results, in terms of both short-term cancer outcomes and side effects.

This trial is registered and described in further detail at ANZCTR:

Who is this study for:

  • Men who have prostate cancer, and…
  • Who have been treated with radiation therapy, 2 or more years ago, and…
  • Whose cancer has returned despite this treatment, and…
  • Are 18 years old or over.

If you are unsure whether you are eligible to join the FIRE trial, please refer to trial details at ANZCTR or ask your doctor.

Ethics approval:

Ethics approval has been granted by the St Vincent’s Human Research Ethics Committee.

This trial is currently recruiting participants.

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