Providing the most innovative and state of the art cancer care close to home

The Mercy Health Cancer Center is pleased to announce the addition of an innovative system for men who are undergoing treatment for prostate cancer. SpaceOAR hydrogel is the latest in prostate cancer therapy that adds a protective layer that acts as a barrier for radiation damage to areas surrounding the prostate, specifically the rectum. For those men choosing to undergo radiation therapy for prostate cancer, the addition of SpaceOAR hydrogel, will reduce the risk of side effects both during and after radiation treatment.

Mercy Health Cancer Center in affiliation with the University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center system, based in Elyria, OH provides Mercy Health patients with access to the nation’s leading experts in cancer care, more than 300 clinical trials and the most innovative approaches to treatment.

“Our goal is to provide the best possible treatment to patients, which is why we are one of the first centers offering SpaceOAR hydrogel,” said Roger Ove, MD PhD, Radiation Oncology Medical Director at the Mercy Health Cancer Center. “Even with advanced technology for prostate cancer radiation delivery, the rectum receives unnecessary radiation dose. Creating space between the prostate and rectum is an important advancement that significantly protects the rectum during radiation treatments and reduces the likelihood of side effects.”

In a prospective, randomized, multi-center clinical trial in the United States, patients treated with SpaceOAR hydrogel prior to prostate cancer radiation treatment demonstrated bowel, urinary, and sexual benefits through three years of follow-up. Those patients who received SpaceOAR were 8 times more likely to develop significant declines in sexual quality and urinary flow.

This minimally invasive outpatient procedure is done using local or general anesthesia with patients being able to immediately resume their normal activities. The gel stays in place for approximately three months and is then naturally absorbed and cleared in the urine in about 6 months.

UH participated in the initial clinical trial and were the first in the nation to use SpaceOAR following FDA approval. We are now able to provide this cutting edge service to patients not only at the main campus, but at additional sites such as the Mercy Health Cancer Center.

SpaceOAR hydrogel has become a component of a variety of modern radiation therapy techniques used for prostate cancer, which include brachytherapy, IMRT (intensity modular radiotherapy), and stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT).

“Paying attention to detail and meticulous preparation for therapy can make a tremendous difference in long term quality of life”, said Dr. Ove. “We utilize these techniques with the majority prostate cancer patients treated with external beam radiotherapy and seed implant brachytherapy at Mercy Health Cancer Center.” he said.

“In 2018, there will be over 160,000 new cases of prostate cancer in American men and so far, over 20,000 patients worldwide have been successfully treated with SpaceOAR hydrogel,” said John Pedersen, CEO of Augmenix, Inc.

Mercy Health – Lorain and University Hospitals continue to collaborate to bring these life-saving and changing innovations to our Lorain family.