The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics
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Dutasteride (Avodart) for Prevention of Prostate Cancer

A study recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine concluded that dutasteride (Avodart – GlaxoSmithKline), a 5α-reductase inhibitor marketed for treatment of symptomatic benign prostatic hyperplasia, reduced the risk of prostate cancer over a 4-year period.1

5α-REDUCTASE INHIBITORS — Dutasteride is one of two 5α-reductase inhibitors marketed in the US for treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia.2 The other is finasteride (Proscar, and others). Both finasteride and dutasteride inhibit conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone in the prostate, reduce the size of the prostate, improve urinary flow, and suppress prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels. Both can cause sexual adverse effects. The double-blind, placebo-controlled, Prostate Cancer Prevention Trial (PCPT) found that men who took finasteride for 7 years had a lower incidence of ... more      

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