Written by Dr.Albana Greca Sejdini, Md, MMedSc

All about Hormone Therapy for Prostate Cancer

Actually, hormone therapy for prostate cancer treatment is designed to help your body to stop the production of testosterone and other male sex hormones temporarily or permanently.

What is the purpose of using hormone therapy in prostate cancer?

Hormone treatment, also known as androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) or androgen suppression therapy, involves adding, removing or blocking hormones to cure prostate cancer. Cells of prostate cancer are similar to other living cells; this means they need fuel to grow.

As testosterone hormone is the major fuel for prostate cancer cells, so cutting off testosterone supply will definitely cause death of cancer cells or at least delay their growth. Hormone therapy can be given in many ways; like pills or injections. (Hormones are chemical materials produced normally by the glands of your body; they circulate in your blood to affect other tissues.)

The benefits of hormone therapy for prostate cancer

The hormonal treatment can be used for treatment of advanced stages as well as early stages of prostate cancer. If you are suffering from advanced prostate cancer, hormone therapy is used to shrink your tumor or to delay its growth.

While if you are diagnosed with prostate cancer in early stage; hormonal treatment is usually used prior radiation therapy to make sure that radiation treatment will succeed. Hormone therapy can be also used after surgery to ensure the best results.

This treatment is usually the treatment of choice for men who refuses other types of prostate cancer treatments.

Side effects of hormone therapy for prostate cancer

Although the benefits, side effects are inevitable. The most common are:

    * problems in erection,

    * hot flares,

    * losing some of your bone and muscular masses,

    * low sexual desire,

    * increase in weight, and

    * high risk for heart attacks.

Be careful if you are under hormonal treatment of prostate cancers for a long period of time, as most experts believe that this can cause you a lot of cardiovascular problems!!! Just be close to your doctor when you’re under a hormone therapy treatment.

Options for hormone therapy for prostate cancer:

hormone therapy

It is a fact that about ninety percent of testosterone in your body is produced by your testicles; therefore surgical removal of the testicles (Orchiectomy) will effectively reduce the level of testosterone in your blood.

Since 1940s, orchiectomy is used for treatment of prostate cancer; as it causes a similar effect of hormone therapy but orchiectomy effect is permanent and irreversible. Surgery is the treatment of choice for men who prefer low cost, single appointment procedure.

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