Men with prostate cancer may benefit from early salvage radiotherapy (SRT) post-prostatectomy, regardless of whether prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels are elevated, according to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.1

Researchers enrolled 1106 patients who received SRT between 1987 and 2013; median follow-up was 8.9 years. Evaluated variables included overall survival (OS), cumulative incidence for biochemical recurrence (BcR), distant metastases (DM), and cause-specific mortality (CSM).

Using multiple statistical analyses, it was determined that pre-SRT PSA were linked to each recorded variable; the relative risk of BcR, CSM, and all-cause mortality doubled with each pre-SRT PSA.

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The authors conclude that clinicians ought not to monitor PSA levels post-prostatectomy before initiating SRT. Using SRT when PSA levels are low may reduce BcR, DM, CSM, and all-cause mortality.


  1. Stish BJ, Pisansky TM, Harmsen WS, et al. Improved metastasis-free and survival outcomes with early salvage radiotherapy in men with detectable prostate-specific antigen after prostatectomy for prostate cancer. J Clin Oncol. 2016 Aug 1. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2016.68.3425 [Epub ahead of print]