Study: Androgen Deprivation Therapy Not Linked to Dementia

A recent study did not find a correlation between androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) and risk for dementia and Alzheimer disease in patients with prostate cancer.

ADT has been shown to delay prostate cancer, but it is also associated with severe adverse events, including type 2 diabetes and, according to several recent observational studies, possibly cognitive impairment.

Could Androgen Therapy Increase Survival Rate in Acute Myeloid Leukemia?
Managing Hypoandrogenism in the Aging Man

In their study, researchers identified 30,903 men, aged 40 years or more, with newly diagnosed nonmetastic prostate cancer between April 1, 1988 and April 30, 2015 using the United Kingdom’s Clinical Practice Research Datalink. Researchers observed participants from 1 year after entry into the study until incident of dementia diagnosis, stroke or ischemic attack, death, the participant ended their registration with the general practice, or until the end of the study, April 30, 2016. The mean age of participants was 70.7 years, and the mean follow-up time was 4.3 years.

Cox proportional hazard models were used to estimate adjusted hazard ratios for dementia risk in patients using ADT, and compared the risk between ADT use and nonuse.

Newly diagnosed dementia occurred in 799 patients during the study, with an incidence rate of 6 per 1000 person-year. Of the 799 patients, Alzheimer disease was diagnosed in 293 patients, and 506 had a diagnosis of other dementias.

“In this population-based study, the use of ADT was not associated with an increased risk of dementia. Additional studies in different settings are needed to confirm these findings,” the researchers concluded.

—Melissa Weiss


Khosrow-Khavar F, Rej S, Yin H, Aprikian A, and Azoulay L. Androgen deprivation therapy and the risk of dementia in patients with prostate cancer. J. Clin. Oncol. 2017;35(2):201-207.