Hormone drug increases prostate cancer survival

Paris : A hormone drug, Casodex, increases the chances of men surviving prostate cancer by more than a third, according to a new study.

In the Early Prostate Cancer Study it was shown that Casodex made by the drug company AstraZeneca, delays progression of the cancer for up to three years and reduces the risk of it spreading to the bones by a third. If it combined with radiotherapy, patients have a 35 per cent better chance of survival.

Casodex works by starving the cancer of testosterone by stopping the hormone reaching it.

Until now some doctors have been reluctant to use such treatments, partly because surgery and radiotherapy were seen as more effective. Doctors said the drug is as effective as radical surgery or taking medicines that block the production of testosterone completely.