This medical video looks into how an ultrasound may save the lives of prostate cancer patients.
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Ultrasound gives us the first glimpse of life. Now it could save lives. Doctor Michael Koch is studying high intensity focused ultrasound, or HIFU, to treat prostate cancer. HIFU is 10,000 times more powerful than a regular ultrasound. Dr. Michael Koch: HIFU is unique, though, that because it's administered Transrectally, it doesn't really cause any discomfort at all. Jennifer Matthews: HIFU destroys the tissue by heating it up. European research on HIFU shows promise. Dr. Michael Koch: In those studies, they found that it has an effectiveness that's probably comparable to radiation therapy. It may or may not be comparable to surgery. Jennifer Matthews: Last December, john was diagnosed with prostate cancer. Rose Marie: I think anybody who hears that word, it's just not, Cancer is not what you want to hear wherever it's at. Jennifer Matthews: He decided to try HIFU instead of radiation or surgery. John Marie: If they do this procedure and cancer shows up later, it can be done again, even less intrusive. Jennifer Matthews: John had the treatment in February. In May, the doctors said the cancer was gone. John Marie: I have no second thoughts about the choices that we made. Things just, I don't know how they can look any better at this point. Jennifer Matthews: While HIFU destroyed john's cancer, doctors say the research is early and they can only hope it will prove as effective for other patients. This is Jennifer Matthews reporting.