Androgen Deprivation Therapy For Prostate Cancer May Raise Cataract Risk

People with prostate cancer seemingly have to face with a dilemma situation. This because a hormone therapy for prostate cancer called Androgen Deprivation Therapy (ADT) could raise their risk of developing cataracts, according to results published in the March issue of the Annals of Epidemiology.

Androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) is the first line treatment used to treat advanced prostate cancer. This treatment aims to suppresses the production of testosterone, which in turn inhibit the growth of prostate cancer cells.

Recently, US regulators ruled that certain hormone treatments for prostate cancer must carry new warnings about an increased risk of diabetes and obesity.

As both diabetes and obesity have been linked to cataracts, leading researchers to question whether this ophthalmologic condition could be another adverse consequence of ADT use.

“we suspected that cataract might have been another unintended consequence” of ADT, Jennifer Beebe-Dimmer of the Karmanos Cancer Institute in Detroit, Michigan, told Reuters Health in an e-mail.

For the study, researchers evaluated nearly 66 000 patients with prostate cancer aged 66 or older from a large US cancer registry and found that overall, about 111 new cataracts were diagnosed for every 1000 men studied per year.

After accounting for other risk factors for cataracts, they found that men treated with ADT had, on average, a 9 percent increased risk of developing a cataract compared to those not treated with ADT. The risk rose by around 26 percent among men who had no history of cataracts prior to undergoing orchiectomy.

“With ADT so commonly used as part of a patient’s treatment for prostate cancer, it’s important to have a complete understanding of the negative consequences of therapy,” Jennifer Beebe-Dimmer said.

“Patients should be monitored carefully while on ADT for new diagnoses of diabetes, and potentially cataract,” she added.

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