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Prostate Cancer Therapies Raise Heart Risk

But Study Shows Some Anti-Hormone Treatments Are Less Risky Than Others

Risks vs. Benefits

While the study does not prove that anti-hormone drugs cause heart ills, "they show the importance of taking heart disease into account when considering anti-hormone therapy, especially since it is now being given to men with earlier-stage disease," she adds.

While increased, the risks are still low in absolute terms, says ESMO President Jose Baselga, MD, chairman of the medical oncology service at the Vall d'Hebron University Hospital in Barcelona, Spain.

For example, the researchers estimated that anti-hormone therapies cause an extra one heart problem per year for every 100 prostate cancer patients treated, he notes.

"Untreated, advanced prostate cancer is a lethal condition. For most men, the benefits of anti-hormone therapy ultimately outweigh the increased risk of heart problems," Baselga says.

That said, he and Van Hemelrijck agree that men at risk for heart disease should talk to their doctor and undergo a through heart health exam before starting anti-hormone treatment.

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