Researchers from Vanderbilt University has published a new study stating that treating prostate cancer patients with androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) raises the chances of developing several other cardiovascular diseases that may lead to the death of the patient; and to this end, a prostate cancer survivor is very likely to die from other illnesses not related to his condition.
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ADT reduces serum testosterone within the body, and this in turn minimizes the growth of prostate cancer tumor or shrinks the growth, but researchers say treating a patient with one particular kind of medication or therapy can affect the health of other dependent organs of the body.
So the researchers developed a ABCDE algorithm which was meant to assess the risks prostate cancer survivors face in developing cardiovascular problems. The evaluation included awareness and aspirin, blood pressure monitoring, cholesterol management and cigarette avoidance, diet and diabetes, and exercise (ABCDE).
“While ADT therapy is of great benefit to many patients with prostate cancer, it may also increase the risk of developing diabetes or having a heart attack or stroke”, said Dr. Eric Shinohara, medical director of the Vanderbilt Radiation Oncology Clinic.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said about 610,000 patients die from cardiovascular-related problems every year, and over a half of these are men.
"No one is simply a prostate or a heart, and the treatments we use to treat one illness or another can dramatically affect the well-being of other parts of a patient," said Dr. Alicia Morgans, an assistant professor of medicine at Vanderbilt University, in a press release.
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In explaining how the research team ran their study, Dr. Himisha Beltran, an assistant professor of medicine at Weill Cornell Medicine and director of clinical activities at Caryl and Israel Englander Institute of Precision Medicine revealed that “We used genomics to better understand how neuroendocrine prostate tumors develop. These tumors seem to arise clonally from a typical prostate cancer (adenocarcinoma) cell of origin.”