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Monday, December 22, 2014

Is It an Option? Part 4

Posted by William on July 3, 2012

In stage I, cancer can’t be felt during a rectal exam. It’s usually found by accident during surgery for a different reason — usually to relieve the pressure of BPH. There’s no evidence it’s spread outside the prostate
In stage II, the tumor can be felt during a rectal exam or is found with a biopsy. There’s no evidence it’s spread outside the prostate.
In stage III, the cancer has spread outside the prostate to surrounding tissues.
In stage IV, the cancer has spread to lymph nodes or to other parts of the body.
So, triple hormone therapy works like this: a man is given a combination of three drugs — lupron or zoladex, flutamide or casodex, and proscar — which blocks production of testosterone — the fuel that powers the prostate. Treatment includes one drug injection every 28 days and two drugs taken by mouth daily for an average of 13 months.

Patients continue on with one drug — proscar — continuously as maintenance. Temporary side effects during the treatment may include hot flashes, breast enlargement, loss of sex drive, impotence, weight gain, anemia and osteoporosis. An additional side effect may include increased hair growth from the proscar, an ingredient of the men’s hair grower, Propecia.

The important thing is that the side effects are almost always reversed when you end treatment,? says Leibowitz. My opinion is that prostate cancer is systemic in most men. How many men have cancer that truly localized in the prostate? If it’s truly localized, why does it sometimes recur in men who’ve had their prostate removed?

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