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Aggressive Treatments for Prostate Cancer Not Required in Elderly

by Medindia Content Team on May 6, 2006 at 3:18 PM
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Aggressive Treatments for Prostate Cancer Not Required in Elderly

A recent study has revealed that although prostate cancer was extremely dangerous, men over 75, may not require aggressive treatments.

Treatments like radical prostatectomy or radiation does help to eradicate the cancer but the quality of life for elders is often affected because of resulting urinary incontinence and impotence.

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The lead researcher Dr. Richard M. Hoffman, an associate professor of medicine at the University of New Mexico Cancer Research and Treatment Center said, "There's no evidence there is going to be a significant survival benefit from treatment."

At the same time conservative treatments, like hormone therapy or waiting can preserve quality of life, but is often ineffective for aggressive cancer that progresses quickly.
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The study was conducted on 465 men aged 75 to 84 who had been diagnosed with localized prostate cancer in 1994 or 1995. One hundred seventy-five men underwent aggressive treatment such as surgery or radiation therapy, while 290 received hormone therapy or no treatment.

The results inferred that there were few men who died of the cancer but the therapy had "problems with urinary incontinence and sexual dysfunction, compared with men who received watchful waiting or hormone treatment."

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