ARIZONA STATE UROLOGICAL INSTITUTE The Center for Comprehensive Urological Care

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SpaceOar Hydrogel is There to Reduce Radiation Treatment Side Effects

What is the Purpose of SpaceOar?

Men that have prostate cancer have limited treatment options, including surgery, medical surveillance, or radiation therapy. Because the other two option are riskier options, radiation therapy stands out as a good choice. However, because of the close anatomical proximity of the prostate and the rectum, radiation therapy comes with several undesirable rectal side effects, like pain and diarrhea. SpaceOar was created to lessen or mitigate these side effects by putting some distance between the prostate and rectum during treatments. Approved by the FDA, SpaceOar is clinically proven to minimize the risk of bowel, urinary, and sexual side effects from radiation therapy and improve quality of life. 

What Does the SpaceOar Procedure Entail?

The procedure is typically performed in one of our offices. First, our provider will position your body, lying down, with your legs above the rest of your body at a ninety-degree angle. Our medical team will numb the area with local anesthesia for your comfort. Our provider will then inject the hydrogel between your rectum and prostate, using an ultrasound probe to guide the needle. This will put a half-inch gap between the two to lessen the amount of radiation the rectum is exposed to while you are going through prostate radiation treatment. The hydrogel remains in place during the duration of radiation treatment and then is slowly reabsorbed by the body after the therapy is complete.

Proven Clinical Results

Patients who received SpaceOar® before their radiation treatment exhibited the following compared to those who did not:

  • Sexual: SpaceOAR® hydrogel patients who had erections sufficient for intercourse at baseline were 78% more likely to retain sexual function at 3 years
  • Urinary: 65% fewer SpaceOAR® hydrogel patients experienced clinically significant declines (2X the Minimal Important Difference) in detectable urinary quality of life
  • Bowel: 66% fewer SpaceOAR® hydrogel patients experienced clinically significant declines in detectable bowel quality of life (1x the Minimal Important Difference)

SpaceOAR® hydrogel is cleared by the FDA and more than 15,000 patients worldwide have been successfully treated.

If you are considering radiation treatment for prostate cancer, schedule an appointment with our providers today to discuss if SpaceOar is the right option for you!

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