ANCHOR LEAD: A DRUG CALLED DUTASTERIDE DOESN’T REDUCE THE RISK OF PROSTATE CANCER, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
About 30,000 men will die this year in the United States due to prostate cancer. Controversy surrounding almost every aspect of the disease is rife, including the possibility of prevention. A drug called dutasteride, already known to help in other prostate conditions, was studied for possible preventive powers in a study published recently in the New England Journal of Medicine. Here’s what Ballantine Carter, a prostate cancer expert at Johns Hopkins, has to say about the study.
CARTER: What they found after four years giving men placebo versus dutasteride, the drug, was that the rates of prostate cancer were reduced, but the caveat is really the way the biopsies were done. You could ask the question was the biopsies a fair way to determine whether the cancers that were harmful were actually reduced. A lot of people I believe think the cancers that were reduced were the low grade cancers that never end up harming people. :28
At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.