According to the National Institute of Health, it is estimated that in 2014 almost 30,000 men will die of prostate cancer, and over 200,000 cases will be diagnosed. While doctors recommend regular prostate exams for older men to catch the disease at the earliest possible point, experts in the field of oncology are testing new forms and combinations of cancer treatments that target different stages of progression.
A recently published study backed by the National Cancer Institute found potentially substantial benefits from administering chemotherapy drug treatment in addition to hormonal therapy to men with certain advanced forms of prostate cancer.
All participants in the study received ADT, a hormone therapy treatment, either alone or in conjunction with the chemotherapy drug docetaxel. The study noted a significant increase in survival rate for men receiving the combination chemo-hormonal therapy; half had survived to almost 58 months compared to 44 months using only the hormone therapy.
The results were more pronounced in men whose cancer had metastasized to a further extent throughout their bodies. Since the chemotherapy can be associated with potentially toxic effects, it is recommended for use in combination with ADT as cancer treatment in patients in more advanced stages who are already candidates for the docetaxel.
Using chemotherapy earlier in the treatment process may also slow marked progression of the disease. Efforts will be made to determine the effects of the treatment combination on men with less advanced forms of the disease.
The potential ramifications on the oncologist community regarding progressive combinations of therapies could be tremendous, and hopefully beneficial to patients suffering from any stage of illness.
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