Effects of androgen-deprivation therapy on hypercoagulability in prostate cancer patients: A prospective, longitudinal study
Introduction: Androgen-deprivation therapy (ADT) is the mainstay of systemic therapy for advanced prostate cancer (PCa), but has significant adverse effects, including increasing concern for cardiovascular (CV) and thromboembolic (TE) complications. This study carefully investigates any relationship between ADT use and hypercoagulability as a possible mechanism of these adverse effects.
Methods: We performed a prospective, longitudinal study in a cohort of patients with advanced PCa initiating ADT (n=18). Controls included men with biochemical failure after local therapy on watchful waiting (n=10), as well as healthy controls (n=8). Global hemostasis was evaluated using the sensitive global hemostasis assay, thromboelastography (TEG). Patients were evaluated at baseline and every three months for a minimum of 12 months.
Results: The results of the TEG studies demonstrated 14/18 (78%) of advanced PCa patients had evidence of a hypercoagulable state before initiating therapy. Significant baseline hypercoagulability was documented in this cohort compared to the two control groups. ADT did not appear to exacerbate hypercoagulability over time as a whole: only 10/18 (56%) patients had TEG findings consistent with hypercoagulability at the end of study. However, 3/18 (17%) PCa patients initiating ADT had significantly new hypercoagulable TEG changes on treatment compared to baseline.
Conclusions: This prospective pilot study demonstrates a complex interaction between ADT and hypercoagulable state in men with advanced PCa. TEG abnormalities were mostly associated with volume of cancer as compared to ADT use; however, it is possible that ADT may lead to hypercoagulability in a subset of men, suggesting that sensitive monitoring of coagulation of men on ADT could help identify those at risk of developing CV/TE complications. Study limitations include the relatively small cohort of men followed after initiating ADT and these results require confirmation in a larger trial to rule out subtle effects on hypercoagulability.
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