Hydrogel is a gel-like substance that is implanted between the prostate and rectum to reduce side effects during radiation therapy treatment.
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What is hydrogel?
Hydrogel is a gel-like substance that is implanted between the prostate and rectum in a minimally invasive procedure by a urologist. At Icon, we use a hydrogel known as SpaceOAR Hydrogel. SpaceOAR stands for Space Organs At Risk, as it protects the rectum during radiation therapy treatment of prostate cancer to reduce the risk of potential side effects.
As the rectum and prostate are very close and separated by only a small space, the rectum can be affected by radiation to the prostate. SpaceOAR Hydrogel moves the rectal wall away from the prostate, protecting the rectum from being damaged during radiation therapy treatment.
SpaceOAR Hydrogel is made from a soft gel-like synthetic material that mostly consists of water and can be safely used in the body. Following treatment, the SpaceOAR Hydrogel liquefies and is naturally absorbed and excreted by the kidneys within six months.
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Starting radiation therapy
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Frequently asked questions
Learn answers to some common concerns and misconceptions about radiation therapy.