What is palliative treatment?

Palliative therapy does not stop the growth of the cancer, but aims to reduce the pain and any other problems caused by it. It is very important that your GP and hospital team are aware of any other medication you are taking. This includes any herbal or ‘alternative’ remedies. If you wish to try any complementary therapies to help you cope with your symptoms, you should always talk to your own doctor first. They will advise you whether they are safe.

Examples of palliative treatment

  • Radiotherapy Very effective in reducing prostate cancer pain if the cancer has spread to the bone. You may be offered Radium-223, which is a specialised form of radiotherapy for cancer that started in the prostate and spread to the bones. You may have to travel to a different hospital for it.
  • Tablets containing steroid drugs Can be effective but can cause stomach ulcers and fluid retention. Other medication can reduce these side effects.
  • Bis-phosphonates At this stage of the disease, your doctor may recommend medicine that helps prevent thinning of the bones.

For more information and contact details for support groups and other useful organisations:

Prostate Cancer Help

Prostate Cancer Help
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