The hormone-sensitive cells die and the hormone-resistant cells overgrow, resulting in disease progression.
The drug of choice for secondary treatment is estramustine Estracyt. The success of the therapy is followed by changes of the prostate-specific antigen level and Karnofsky scale.
In the present study, the results of estramustine treatment of 79 patients with advanced prostate cancer in 12 hospitals were evaluated. The mean prostate-specific antigen level improved for 6 months, but rose from the ninth month on.
The improvement in the subjective condition of the patients paralleled the change in the prostate-specific antigen level.
Prostate Cancer Immunotherapy Trials
The short time of improvement was a consequence of the very high prostate-specific antigen level and the poor general condition.
Estramustine administration is recommended when the prostate-specific antigen level becomes more than doubled following primary treatment.
If the prostate-specific antigen level has not decreased after treatment for 3 months, the secondary strategy is to apply chemotherapy.