Intermittent hormone therapy (IHT) as opposed to continuous hormone therapy (CHT) provides a better quality of life (QoL) for men with locally advanced prostate cancer. However, there is a debate created by a few major research protocols that have been inconclusive as to the difference in achieving the ultimate goal, survival despite prostate cancer.
Researchers from China have reported the results of a meta-analysis they performed of a randomized controlled trial that evaluated the effectiveness of IHT versus CHT for men with locally advanced prostate cancer.
In their study the primary endpoint was overall mortality and the secondary endpoints included disease progression, quality of life (QOL) and adverse effects between two groups. Their analysis threw from six randomized controlled trials that had 2996 men included.
The researchers concluded:
After hormone therapy the men who had the intermittent schedule (IHT) had no significant difference from those undergoing continuous therapy (CHT) in terms of their overall mortality (survival
They also confirmed that men treated with IHT reported a better QOL, which included fewer adverse effects and considerable economic benefit for the individual and the community
Given these findings we can say that current clinical studies confirm that both schedules for delivering hormone therapy were safe and effective. However, when the QoL is taken into account IHT seems to be superior. Adding to the superiority of IHT is the fact that it is less expensive than CHT.
The Aging Male : the official journal of the International Society for the Study of the Aging Male; 2015 Jul 30 [Epub ahead of print]; ZhiLong Dong, Hanzhang Wang, MengMeng Xu, Yang Li, MingLi Hou, YanLing Wei, Xingchen Liu, ZhiPing Wang, XiaoDong Xie