Hormone Treatment For Prostate Cancer

Not all cancers, but the cancer of the prostate gland is one of the many that depend in a huge way on the hormones in the male body in order to grow and metastasize. As a result, of the best treatments for prostate cancer with a specific focus on early stage disease is hormonal treatment. Hormone treatments generally are offered in two ways: the first is to remove the glands in the body that produce the implicated hormones and the second to cease the production of the hormones through the aid of endocrine suppressive drug therapy.

Since the realization had come about, hormones have grown to being used to treat prostate condition, most especially when the patient is unable to undergo routine prostatectomy or radiation therapy, perhaps because of other health problems. In addition, hormone treatment is very widely used for the treatment of recurrent prostate malignant carcinomas after initial treatments appear to have failed. This is done for shrinking the cancer before the surgery or radiation treatment, the goal being to reduce body levels of the male hormones (most notably testosterone) that have the ability to fuel the growth of cancers.

Generally, hormonal therapy has a downside in that it increases the risk of osteoporosis (a bone condition characterized by a decrease in density, resulting in bones that are more porous and more easily fractured than normal bones) in long term survivors. The men could suddenly start to encounter fractures of the wrist, spine, and the hip, or even all the bones of the body.

Today, it has now been determined by scientists conducting prostate cancer research that treating advanced prostate form of cancer with HRT (hormone replacement therapy) patches that contain estrogen not only inhibits the production of testosterone in the body, but also reduces the risk of osteoporosis. Some scientists have actually been led to believe that conversely, such treatment might actually even increase bone density. There have of course always been side effects to such treatments, and not just the bone density thing. For most men, the part that they find hardest to deal with is the breast growth that often results.

For one thing, HRT for prostate cancer really does not cure the disease – it only causes the tumors to shrink. If the treatment persists without backup from other therapies, the carcinomas eventually become adapted to the hormone deprivation and start to feed on something else to fuel their growth. Often after twelve to twenty four months, hormone treatments would hardly be effective against prostate carcinomas anymore.

In addition, late stage sprostate types of cancers tend to eventually become hormone refractory, meaning that they no longer respond to hormone treatments anymore. In such instances, chemotherapy may simply be the best procedure to curb the disease metastasis.

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