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Avodart Reduces Risk of Prostate Cancer

A widely used drug for relieving symptoms of prostate enlargment may modestly reduce the risk of biopsy detected prostate cancer. Avodart helps shrink the prostate gland by blocking the enzyme that converts testosterone to dehydrotestosterone, which contributes to prostate tissue growth. The four-year study tracked nearly 7,000 men who were considered at high risk for prostate cancer. Half received Avodart, while the other half received a look-alike placebo. The men taking Avodart were a little less likely to have prostate cancer detected on biopsy by the end of the study. An accompanying editorial in The New England Journal of Medicine expressed disappointment that the drug did not appear to reduce the risk of high-grade tumors, which are most likely to be lethal.
[New England Journal of Medicine, April 1, 2010]

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies..
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