Purpose of review
In men with metastatic or recurrent prostate cancer, androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) is the standard of care. Although effective in cancer control, ADT is associated with multiple adverse effects of which physicians and patients should be aware herein we review these side-effects and their potential management.
ADT reduces serum levels of testosterone and estrogen, resulting in changes in body composition, increased fracture risk, development of insulin resistance, and an unfavorable lipid profile. A number of studies have investigated the association of ADT with cardiovascular mortality; however, it is unclear whether such an association exists. Recently, two separate clinical trials have found that denosumab, a monoclonal antibody, and toremifene citrate, a selective estrogen receptor modulator, could be used to reduce the incidence of fracture in men on ADT.
By providing clinicians with a greater awareness of the literature on ADT, we may minimize the physical and psychological impact of its side-effects. Physicians should be aware of a recent statement by a multilateral advisory panel, stating that there is no indication for a cardiovascular evaluation before starting ADT. Finally, physicians should be informed of recent developments in the prevention of vertebral fractures in men on ADT.