How long can you stay on Casodex?

How long can you stay on Casodex

                   Prostate is a part of the men’s reproductive system beside the penis and testicles. Prostate is a small gland, size of a walnut that is located deep inside the groin and surrounds the tube fixated to the bladder known as the urethra. It is located between the base of the penis and rectum. It plays a great role in sperm viability and motility by supplying seminal fluid or semen and mixed with sperm from the testes. Prostate cancer is the most common form of cancer in male. Casodex 50 mg is a common drug used to help treat prostate cancer.

       Prostate cancer is a common cancer in men, next to skin and lung cancers. It is estimated that 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer at some point in life. It is usually diagnosed in men aged 65 and above. Symptoms of prostate cancer may or may not be experienced by a person. Common symptoms include difficulty passing urine, feeling discomfort when passing urine, presence of blood in urine or semen, increased urination time especially at night, having trouble completely emptying the bladder, unintentional weight loss and bone pain especially at the back, hips or pelvis (waist) area. Due to the nature of the symptoms that may seem similar with other medical conditions, it is best for patients suspected with symptoms of prostate cancer to get checked by a doctor. This helps to detect prostate cancer in an early stage and be provided with early medical care.

            Casodex contains bicalutamide. This active ingredient works by blocking the testosterone hormone. The hormone is responsible for the growths of prostate cancer cells. Bicalutamide belongs to a drug type of androgen receptor inhibitor or in other words, anti-androgen. Casodex is used as hormone therapy. This medicine is typically combined with other hormone treatments such as luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) analog to treat prostate cancer. Casodex is usually given a month prior combining with LHRH analog.

            Prostate cancer is a slow-growing type of cancer. The nature of the disease itself allows more time and chance for men affected by the disease to get early diagnosis and treatment. Treatment for prostate cancer often starts with prescription of Casodex. It is usually given for weeks but commonly up to 2 years. Patients can stay on Casodex for 3 years but it is worth noting that doctors may put patients on Casodex longer than this depending on the stage of the cancer itself. The answer to how long can a person stay on Casodex is only known by the doctor after evaluating the patient’s condition based on cancer stage, response towards medication received, other therapies beside Casodex and possible side effects from treatment. One thing for sure, it is common for patients to be put on Casodex for 2 years.

            Since Casodex is taken for a long period of time, it might be difficult for some people to be consistent with the medication. It is best for patients to take medicine at the same time of the day to remember to take it on a regular basis. The recommended dose is 1 tablet once a day. Patients can take the medicine in the morning or evening. The important part is to take it regularly at the same time. This will maximise the drug effectivity and ensure the drug works in the body as it is at optimal level.

            Casodex does have potential side effects. Just as with any other medication, it is worth noting that doctors will always prescribe the best medicine available and the benefits outweigh its side effects. Common side effects of Casodex include dizziness, presence of blood in urine, abdominal pain, breast tenderness, hot flush and swelling of limbs such as hands, ankles or feet. It is rare to see serious side effects such as breathing difficulty but should there be such an event, the patient should get to the emergency room immediately.

            It is understandable that patients will have worries when taking Casodex due to the fact that it needs to be taken for a long time. However, patients should not be worried about the possibility of toxicity or damages to organs as doctors will always make sure it is safe for them to take it for a long period such as routine blood test and appointments or follow-up. Hence, patients should always follow instructions given by the doctor and not stop taking it before discussing it with their doctor. If a patient has other medical conditions such as high blood pressure or taking other medicine, the patient should notify their doctor before using Casodex. This is vital to prevent possible drug interaction or adverse side effects.

            In essence, Casodex is commonly prescribed to treat prostate cancer. It is taken for a long period of time. Patients should not stop taking this medicine out of sudden as it may lead to antiandrogen withdrawal syndrome which may worsen the prostate cancer or cause the cancer to progress rapidly than ever before.

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