BACKGROUND: Radiation therapy is a standard of care in the treatment of prostate cancer. Relatively recent advances in technologies in the delivery of radiation therapy are altering our current approach to treatment of prostate cancer. METHODS: This review discusses the results of retrospective, prospective, and randomized clinical trials that have evaluated clinical outcomes in prostate cancer treated with newer radiation therapy technologies. RESULTS: Randomized trials have demonstrated that higher doses of radiation therapy improve clinical outcomes but with increased toxicity to normal tissue. The introduction of more conformal radiation therapy techniques such as intensity-modulated radiation therapy, proton therapy, stereotactic body radiotherapy, and brachytherapy have allowed for further dose escalation with simultaneous reduction in toxicity. However, use of more conformal treatments requires a better understanding of prostate motion and the ability to track prostate movements in real time. CONCLUSIONS: Technological advancements have improved radiation dose delivery to the prostate and have reduced normal tissue toxicity. Randomized trials are warranted to ultimately evaluate clinical benefit and outcomes.
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