Addition of Radiation to Hormone Therapy Improves Survival in Locally Advanced Prostate Cancer

Posted on June 8th, 2010 by

The addition of radiation therapy to hormone therapy reduces the risk of prostate cancer death by 43% among men with locally advanced or high-risk prostate cancer compared with hormone therapy alone, according to the results of a phase III study presented at the 2010 annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology.

Locally advanced prostate cancer refers to cancer that has spread through the prostate capsule but not to distant sites in the body. Treatment of locally advanced prostate cancer often includes androgen deprivation therapy (hormone therapy). Hormone therapy blocks male hormones from stimulating the growth of prostate cancer.

To determine whether the addition of radiation therapy to hormone therapy results in better outcomes than hormone therapy alone, researchers conducted a study among 1,205 men with locally advanced or high-risk prostate cancer. Half the men received hormone therapy alone and half received hormone therapy and radiation therapy.

The combination of hormone therapy and radiation appeared to offer a benefit: seven years following treatment, 74% of men who received the combination treatment were alive compared with 66% of those who received hormone therapy alone.

Among patients who received the combination of hormone therapy and radiation, 10% died from their prostate cancer compared with 26% of men who received hormone therapy alone. Men who received radiation plus hormone therapy lived an average of six months longer than their counterparts who received hormone therapy alone.

The researchers concluded that men with locally advanced prostate cancer who received radiation plus hormone therapy lived longer and were less likely to die from their prostate cancer than those who received hormone therapy alone.

Reference: Warde PA, Mason MD, Sydes MR, et al. Intergroup randomized phase III study of androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) + radiation therapy (RT) in locally advanced prostate cancer (CaP) (NCIC-CTG, SWOG, MRC-UK, INT: T94-0220; NCT00002633. Presented at the 2010 annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. June 4-8, 2010. Chicago, IL. Abstract CRA 4504.

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