Newly diagnosed prostate cancer: what would you do?

This week’s New England Journal of Medicine contains a case study that allows you to vote on the appropriate treatment of the newly diagnosed patient described (and comment on why you voted a specific way). Many regular readers of The “New” Prostate Cancer InfoLink may be interested in (a) voting on this case and (b) seeing what others would suggest for this US-based patient.

One surgeon’s laparosopic education

With what seems like an extraordinarily unusual willingness to unmask the flawed process of learning a new surgical technique, Eden et al. have carefully documented a 7-year learning process as the first-named author executed his first 1,000 laparoscopic radical prostatectomies, between 2000 and 2007. Eden actually carried out 83 percent of the procedures himself, and supervised the remain 17 percent. … READ MORE …

The natural remission of cancer

An article in today’s New York Times, based on an article by Zahl et al. to be published next Tuesday in the Achives of Internal Medicine (but already available on line), is about to stir up a hornets’ nest in the world of cancer research. … READ MORE …

Thursday news update, Part A: October 30, 2008

There’s a lot of news today, so we will break it into two sections for reading convenience. In Part A, we deal with information about:

  • Physicial activity and prostate cancer risk
  • Vasectomy and prostate cancer risk
  • The use of surveillance and watchful waiting in men in Sweden
  • A modification to Walsh’s nerve-sparing radical prostatectomy
  • The risks of “multimodal” therapy in high-risk patients and
  • A new, long-acting form of testosterone therapy … READ MORE …

Neoadjuvant hormone therapy in localized and locally advanced prostate cancer

The Cochrane Collaboration is a highly respected global network that seeks to improve healthcare decision-making through systematic reviews of the effects of healthcare interventions, published in The Cochrane Library. The Cochrane Urological Cancers Unit has just published a detailed review and assessment of the value of hormone therapy in neoadjuvant management of localized and locally advanced prostate cancer. … READ MORE …

An abiraterone update

Cougar Biotechnology has recently announced the early results of another ongoing Phase II clincial trial of abiraterone in patients with castration-resistant prostate cancer. The good news is that these results appear to confirm results of earlier trials presented at the ASCO meeting in June this year.

An abiraterone patient blog

For those who are interested in following the abiraterone story in more detail, Bernie Boyce has started a blog on his experiences in enrolling in and (he hopes) participating in the Phase III clinical trial of abiraterone under the supervision of Dr. de Bono at the Royal Marsden Hospital in the UK.

Tahitian “Noni” juice and cancer treatment

The “New” Prostate Cancer InfoLink has noted a reoccurrence of possible interest in the use of Tahitian “Noni” juice, and claims that it has the ability to help patients with cancer (prostate cancer included).

The “New” Prostate Cancer InfoLink is aware of absolutely no good data suggesting that “Noni” juice has any effect on cancer at all. To the contrary, there are extensive data suggesting that claims made by sales persons for this product are illegal and utterly unsubstantiated (and not just in the USA).

Androgen deprivation not associated with bone loss in Japanese men with prostate cancer

It is a seeming axiom that androgen deprivation therapy in men with prostate cancer will accelerate bone loss. This seeming axiom arose in the early 1990s when it was shown that orchiectomy and LHRH analogs were associated with low bone density in men being treated for metastatic prostate cancer. The observation was similar to the observation of osteopenia in hypogonadal young men and in other laboratory and clinical situations. Now comes a study that suggests that the axiom may be limited.

Continue reading

New prostate cancer patient/partner support program

Have you just been diagnosed with prostate cancer? Or do you know someone who has?

If you have just been diagnosed with prostate cancer, you may be trying to work out how you and your spouse or partner are going to deal with this experience. The University of Arizona College of Nursing has initiated a new program called the Telephone Education and Support Project. … MORE …

World’s first “cancer vaccine” approved … in Russia?

So this won’t be that important to most prostate cancer patients, but it is worth noticing that the world’s first cancer immunotherapeutic agent (vitespen or Oncophage®) got approved yesterday — in Russia, for the treatmment of kidney cancer. Hopefully it is a sign of the times. Oncophage is made by an American company, Antigenics, based in New York. It should give Dendreon and others hope for the future.

And an aside … The term “cancer vaccine” can be  very misleading. This term appears to imply that a product prevents a specific cancer from making you sick (like a chickenpox vaccine or an influenza vaccine). However, the vast majority of cancer immunotherapeutics (a term we prefer) work by stopping (or at least delaying the progression of) specific cancers after they have first occurred.