A review of radiation proctitis in the treatment of prostate cancer

J Wound Ostomy Continence Nurs. 2000 May;27(3):179-87. doi: 10.1016/s1071-5754(00)90056-1.


Pelvic radiation is a common therapy for the treatment of prostate cancer. A complication of this therapy, radiation proctitis, may be limited to the direct posttreatment period or it may appear as serious complications that occur months to years after therapy has been completed. Mucosal damage, present with both acute and chronic radiation proctitis, produces a variety of symptoms including mucoid diarrhea, pain upon defecation, serious rectal bleeding, stenosis, and fistula formation. The treatment of radiation proctitis is symptom related, and the goals of therapy include the prevention or correction of mucosal changes and eradication of rectal bleeding. This article will review the pathophysiology of radiation proctitis and its treatment.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Male
  • Proctitis / etiology*
  • Proctitis / physiopathology
  • Proctitis / therapy*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / radiotherapy*
  • Radiotherapy / adverse effects*