Salvage ablation for locally recurrent prostate cancer

Derek J. Lomas, David A. Woodrum, Lance A. Mynderse

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Purpose of reviewThis review aims to summarize the latest evidence for the use of salvage ablation of localized prostate cancer recurrences after primary therapy radiotherapy or prostatectomy.Recent findingsSavage ablation represents a treatment option in select patients with localized recurrences following primary therapy of prostate cancer. Following radiotherapy, salvage cryotherapy and high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) demonstrate encouraging oncologic outcomes. Biochemical recurrence-free survival ranged from 71% at 2 years to 44.2% at 10 years for cryotherapy and from 51% at 5 years to 28.7% at 10 years for HIFU. Rates of adverse effects appear to be more favorable with ablation compared to salvage surgery. Focal salvage ablation may offer a further balance between oncologic control and adverse effects. Following radical prostatectomy, recent data on the use of salvage ablation of local recurrences are less robust with only a few small studies published in the last 2 years.SummarySalvage ablation is an option for localized disease recurrences following primary treatment. Its role is most established for postradiation recurrence. It can also be utilized in postprostatectomy recurrence, although published data is more limited. Future studies are needed to further explore the role of ablation in both cohorts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)188-193
Number of pages6
JournalCurrent Opinion in Urology
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2021


  • ablation
  • cryotherapy
  • high-intensity focused ultrasound
  • prostate cancer
  • salvage therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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