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Prostate Cancer Drug Linked To Increased Risk of Dementia, Finds Study

A hormone-suppressing drug prescribed for the treatment of prostate may cause dementia or Alzheimer's disease.


According to a study that was conducted on more than 150,000 men with prostate cancer, a certain hormone-suppressing drug has been linked to an increased risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

The research study from JAMA Network found that there is a 20 percent higher chance of developing dementia in older men who have been undergoing prostate cancer treatment.

The drug used for treating prostate cancer called Androgen Deprivation Therapy (ADT) is used to suppressed testosterone, a male hormone, which can help in spreading prostate cancer in the body.

The study looked at more than 150,000 men above 66 years of age who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer.

Researchers examined the participants over a period of 10 years after diagnoses.

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Among participants who were given ADT, the researchers found that there was a 20 percent increased risk of dementia and a 14 percent increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

The researchers wrote, “Our results suggest that clinicians need to carefully weigh the long-term risks and benefits of exposure to ADT in patients with a prolonged life expectancy and stratify patients based on dementia risk prior to ADT initiation.” The scientists also found that the risk of dementia as well as Alzheimer’s disease increased with the number of ADT doses prescribed.