Intermittent hormone therapy less effective than continuous therapy in certain men with advanced prostate cancer

   Intermittent hormonal therapy is less effective than continuous hormonal therapy in men with hormone-sensitive metastatic prostate cancer and minimal disease spread. There was a two-year difference in median survival among these men, favoring men who received continuous therapy. Among men with more extensive disease spread, however, the results indicate that intermittent and continuous therapy are comparably effective.

   According to Maha Hussain, MD, Professor of Medicine and Urology at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer in Ann Arbor, Michigan, lead author, "The findings clearly demonstrate that intermittent hormonal therapy is not safe for all patients with metastatic prostate cancer. They will be practice- changing for many doctors in the U.S. and abroad who routinely use intermittent therapy."

   After a median follow-up of 9.2 years, median overall survival in men with minimal disease spread (no spread beyond the spine, pelvis, and lymph nodes) was 7.1 years for those who received continuous therapy versus 5.2 years for those who received intermittent therapy. Among men with more extensive disease spread, median overall survival was similar.