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Prostate cancer

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Bisphosphonate therapy for prostate cancer

Bisphosphonate therapy is a systemic therapy that may be used in the treatment of prostate cancer to strengthen bone.

Bisphosphonate therapy may be used:

  • to relieve bone pain or to prevent fractures in advanced hormone-refractory prostate cancer (palliative therapy)
  • to prevent osteoporosis in men receiving hormonal therapy

Bisphosphonates are used in combination with other standard treatments for hormone-refractory prostate cancer.

The bisphosphonate used to treat hormone-refractory prostate cancer is:

  • zoledronic acid (Zometa)
    • Zoledronic acid is used to treat men who have little or no pain from bone metastases.
    • This drug is effective in reducing the number of skeletal related events, including bone fractures and the need for radiation to bone metastases.
    • This drug also reduces pain related to bone metastases.
    • The drug has a number of side effects, and men should be informed of the risks and benefits of taking zoledronic acid.


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