Intermittent androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) did not reduce long-term health-related events in patients with metastatic prostate cancer when compared with continuous ADT, according to a study published online in JAMA Oncology.1

In this study, investigators sought to compare the long-term events such as cardiovascular and endocrine events between patients who had received intermittent or continuous ADT. Patients were determined to have had an adverse health event based on whether they had any hospital claim or at least 2 physician or outpatient claims 30 days apart for: ischemic and thrombotic events, endocrine events, sexual dysfunction, dementia, and depression.

A total of 1134 patients with metastatic prostate cancer were randomly assigned to receive continuous or intermittent ADT. Median age was 71.3 years and the most common long-term events were hypercholesterolemia (31%) and osteoporosis (19%)

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Results showed that 10-year cumulative incidence of ischemic and thrombotic events was higher for those in the intermittent arm: 33% vs 24% for those in the continuous arm (HR, 0.69; = .02).

The authors concluded that older men who received intermittent ADT had no reduction in bone, endocrine, or cognitive events and an increased incidence of ischemic and thrombotic events.


  1. Hershman DL, Unger JM, Wright JD, et al. Adverse health events following intermittent and continuous androgen deprivation in patients with metastatic prostate cancer [published online ahead of print December 23, 2015]. JAMA Oncol. doi: 10.1001/jamaoncol.2015.4655.