Testosterone is a hormone made by the body. It causes prostate cancer cells to grow. Hormone treatment lowers or blocks the body’s testosterone. This helps to slow or stop the growth of cancer cells.
What do we know about hormone treatments?
Hormone treatments come in shots or pills. Most of the research about hormone medicines is on these drugs—leuprolide (Lupron®, Viadur®, Eligard®), goserelin (Zoladex®), flutamide (Eulexin®), and bicalutamide (Casodex®). Hormone medicines are often combined with prostate surgery or radiation. Hormone treatment can also be used by itself.
Most of the research is about combining hormone medicines with other types of prostate cancer treatments. There is less research about using hormone medicines on their own.
Bicalutamide (Casodex®) is a pill that does not work for localized prostate cancer. This is true whether it is used by itself, with prostate surgery, or with external beam radiation.
Research can’t tell us if using other hormone treatments on their own can stop localized prostate cancer from spreading.