Androgen-Deprivation Therapy Linked to Physical Decline

However, ADT for older men with prostate cancer doesn't cause significant cognitive impairment

THURSDAY, Nov. 4 (HealthDay News) -- Men with prostate cancer on androgen-deprivation therapy (ADT) do not appear to suffer accelerated cognitive decline but may have diminished physical function and quality of life (QoL), according to a pair of studies published online Nov. 1 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Shabbir M.H. Alibhai, M.D., of the University Health Network in Toronto, and colleagues conducted cognitive assessments in men age 50 and older with prostate cancer who were either on ADT or not on ADT, and in healthy controls. Subjects were assessed at baseline and at six and 12 months. The three groups had generally similar cognitive scores at baseline, and the scores did not change significantly for most cognitive domains at six and 12 months.

In a second study, Alibhai and colleagues assessed endurance, upper and lower extremity strength, and the physical components of QoL in men with prostate cancer who were either on ADT or not on ADT, and in healthy controls. The subjects were assessed at baseline and at three, six, and 12 months. Endurance remained the same in the ADT group but improved in the other groups. Upper extremity strength declined in the ADT group, remained stable in the non-ADT group, and improved in the control group, while lower extremity scores remained stable across the groups. A decline in physical components of QoL was reported in the ADT group within three months of starting ADT.

"In conclusion, ADT use is associated with declines in both objective and self-reported physical function in middle-age and older men," write the authors of the second study.

An author of the second study disclosed financial ties to pharmaceutical companies.

Abstract - Cognitive Function Study
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Abstract - Physical Function Study
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