News from Illinois CancerCare

Study Shows Increased Survival Rate in Men with Metastatic Prostate Cancer


Study Shows Increased Survival Rate in Men with Metastatic Prostate Cancer
Addition of Chemotherapy to Hormone Therapy Improves Survival

Peoria, IL, September 8, 2014 – Administering chemotherapy concurrently with hormone therapy improves overall survival for men with hormone-sensitive metastatic prostate cancer, a study has demonstrated. Patients who received hormone therapy along with the chemotherapy drug docetaxel had a 3-year survival rate of 69%, as compared with a 3-year survival rate of 52.5% for men in the same population who received hormone therapy alone, investigators found. The results of this study were recently presented by the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ACSO) at their annual meeting.

“Adding chemotherapy to first line treatment for these prostate cancer patients will help them live longer. That’s very good news for our patients,” said Gary MacVicar, MD, a physician at Illinois CancerCare who specializes in treating prostate cancer. “The chemotherapy agent that was used in this study, docetaxel, is surprisingly well tolerated in men, so adding this drug to hormonal treatments shouldn’t increase the side effects for our patients.”

The results of this study, E3805, which Illinois CancerCare had available for patient participation, showed a tremendous survival advantage when chemotherapy was added to the traditional hormonal therapy prostate patients routinely receive. Chemotherapy has not been used as a first treatment when prostate cancer spreads beyond the prostate. Hormone treatment alone was the standard of care for these men. The results of this study will change the treatment protocol for many of these patients. The results extended overall survival for these men by more than 13 months, from 44 months to 57.6 months. For men whose disease was of higher volume, the survival benefit improved by 17 months, from 32.3 months to 49.2 months.

Illinois CancerCare has participated in National Cancer Institute-sponsored studies since 1979. Patients in central and western Illinois have benefited from access to the new therapies available through clinical trial participation. “This trial is one of several recent advances in the treatment of prostate and other cancers. Only through clinical trial participation can we, the oncology community, make meaningful advances in cancer care and improve survival of our patients,” said MacVicar.

About Illinois CancerCare
Illinois CancerCare is one of the largest practices in the state of Illinois that treats patients with cancer and blood diseases. It provides state of the art treatments to its patients against these complex diseases by staying at the leading edge of clinical research. Illinois CancerCare is central Illinois’ largest network of cancer care specialists with 90-120 open clinical cancer research trials being conducted at any given time. The group has been recognized by the Quality Oncology Practice Initiative (QOPI®) Certification Program for outpatient hematology-oncology practices that meet the highest national standards for quality cancer care. Illinois CancerCare has 17 physicians, 16 APN’s and more than 230 staff members. Illinois CancerCare serves patients in 12 cities and 12 counties throughout central and western Illinois including Bloomington/Normal, Canton, Carthage, Eureka, Galesburg, Kewanee, Macomb, Ottawa, Pekin, Peoria, Peru and Princeton. For further information please visit