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Posted by on Feb 5, 2019 in Prostate cancer | 0 comments

In a nutshell

This study looked at the effect of curcumin on prostate cancer. It concluded that curcumin taken for 6 months was safe but did not reduce the need for hormone suppression therapy. 

Some background

Prostate cancer is an uncontrolled growth of the cells which make up the prostate gland. Prostate cancer can be treated by medication, surgery or radiation. Medication aims to kill the prostate cancer cells chemically. Surgery aims to cut out the cancerous prostate tissue. Radiation therapy uses radio waves to kill the cancerous prostate tissue. 

The prostate is affected by male hormones. A type of medication given to patients with prostate cancer suppresses these hormones so the prostate will not grow. Curcumin is a component of the spice tumeric. It is known to have anti-cancer properties. Curcumin taken after hormone suppression medication may reduce the need to have more hormone suppression medication. 

Methods & findings

97 men were included in the study. The men had prostate cancer. They had also just finished 6 months of hormone suppression therapy. They were randomly assigned to 1 of 2 groups. Group 1 took curcumin orally for 6 months. Group 2 took a placebo for 6 months. Patients were assessed for the length of time it took them to need more hormone suppression therapy, quality of life, testosterone level, level of cancer indicators in the blood and complications. Patients were assessed every month. 

The length of time before patients needed more hormone suppression therapy was similar between groups. Testosterone and cancer indicator level was similar between groups. Though, cancer indicator levels did not progress as much in the curcumin group. Quality of life was similar between the groups. 15.6% of the curcumin group had complications. 34.8% of the placebo group had complications. Complications included an increase in urinations and urinary incontinence. 

The bottom line

This study concluded that curcumin did not affect the length of time off prostate cancer treatment. It did slow down cancer indicator progression. 

The fine print

The authors note that the patients had different characteristics of cancer. This may affect the study's results. 

What’s next?

If you would like to know more about curcumin and prostate cancer, talk to you doctor. 

Published By :

Prostate

Date :

Jan 22, 2019

Original Title :
A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial to evaluate the role of curcumin in prostate cancer patients with intermittent androgen deprivation.
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