18 August 2016
Over 100 prostate cancer patients treated in Bristol by novel new method
The Bristol Haematology and Oncology Centre (BHOC) has reached a
milestone in its treatment of men with metastatic prostate cancer,
celebrating over 100 patients having received Radium 223.
Radium 223, also known as Xofigo, is a novel treatment offered
by the Isotope Unit to prostate cancer patients whose cancer has
spread to the bones, despite standard hormone therapy
The radio-isotope is injected in to the patient and behaves like
calcium in the body, getting absorbed by the bones. It then
directly delivers radiation to the bones, providing pain relief and
extending life expectancy.
Men receive six injections in total, one every four weeks,
taking only a few minutes to administer and with minimal side
The BHOC was one of the first centres to start offering this
treatment regularly on the NHS, starting in February 2014 following
a successful trial.
The team at the Isotope Unit has since helped 14 other centres
across the country establish this service, with more training days
planned to ensure good access to this treatment.
Highly skilled therapy radiographers run this service in
partnership with four consultant oncologists. This method allows
for patients to receive prompt care and a reduced number of
Dr Amit Bahl, the consultant oncologist who leads this
"This local service continues to move from strength to strength
and we are thrilled to be at the point where we are treating our
100th patient, whereas other centres are still in the
"The team find it incredibly motivating to be able to provide a
novel treatment in this area of unmet need which has such great
benefits for our patients.
"We look forward to being able to treat many more patients in
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