Friday, May 01, 2009

Consider Heart and Bones With Androgen-Deprivation Therapy

Prostate cancer therapy carries risk for heart, bone side effects, as well as diabetes

01 may 2009-- Androgen-deprivation therapy for men with prostate cancer carries significant risk for cardiovascular and bone-related side effects, as well as for diabetes, according to a review of the medical literature published online April 27 in the journal Cancer.

Lockwood G. Taylor, of the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston, and colleagues reviewed the medical literature on adverse events related to androgen-deprivation therapy in prostate cancer. In all, 683 articles were screened for data on cardiovascular and bone-related outcomes, with 14 articles meeting the inclusion criteria. In some cases, researchers pooled relevant data and calculated risk estimates.

Men receiving androgen-deprivation therapy for prostate cancer had a 23 percent increase in risk of fracture (relative risk, 1.23) and a 17 percent increase in cardiovascular-related mortality (hazard ratio, 1.17) compared to prostate cancer patients who did not receive androgen-deprivation therapy, the investigators discovered. In two large studies, increased risk of diabetes between 36 and 49 percent also was observed.

"Androgen-deprivation therapy was associated with an increased risk of skeletal fracture, incident diabetes, and cardiovascular-related mortality, although the absolute risk of these events was low. Preventive measures against these adverse effects and careful assessment of patient's baseline health status should be considered," the authors conclude.

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