All medical interventions require a risk-benefit calculation to be undertaken to determine whether a particular treatment will serve the patient and are worth the potential or likely side effect/s. If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with prostate cancer, it pays to be informed about the options available for your healthcare provider to consider. Since cancers of the reproductive system thrive on hormones, androgen deprivation therapy, or ADT, is one possible therapeutic solution. It works by reducing testosterone levels in a way that can be effective in slowing down tumour growth and is often incorporated as a supplement to radium or used in conjunction with chemotherapy.
This hormone treatment for prostate cancer may be administered in a variety of ways. It can be delivered via injection at regular intervals, in tablet form, a combination of medication and injections, or through surgery. An operation can be performed in which there is complete or fractional removal of the testes in order to achieve lasting results, i.e. this procedure brings male hormones to a standstill and is favoured by some as an alternative to undergoing lengthy drug therapy.
Despite the advantages of this particular treatment route, ADT for prostate cancer has some associated undesirable risks, some minor and others more serious, that you should be aware of and discuss with your doctor. Most significantly, medical researchers have demonstrated a link between certain heart conditions, diabetes and ADT therapy. This can be explained by the fact that cancer of the prostate most often occurs in males who have reached middle age and beyond and who have a higher incidence of these often age-related conditions. However, experts still recommend that any patient with known increased risk factors should be closely observed and undergo regular checkups while receiving treatment. Despite this, a clear benefit of androgen therapy for prostate cancer is that it is can serve to assist in the alleviation of symptoms and or keep the illness from advancing, at any stage of tumour progression, for a significant period of time.
If you are in need of a dedicated professional to advise you and assist with your prostate health needs, the team at QProstate specialise in prostate cancer treatment and the Brisbane clinic’s founder, Dr Peter Swindle, is a highly knowledgeable urologist who operates using the latest technology and has established a reputation as a trusted leader in this field.