Combining two prostate drugs improves health

Combining two prostate drugs instead of taking only one will lead to improved health for millions of U.S. men, states the American Prostate Society’s newsletter published recently.

The benefits of combining a drug that reduces glands in the prostate with a different drug that relaxes the prostate’s muscles are “so strong I envision major changes in medical practice in the near future,” says Leroy M. Nyberg, Jr., M.D., research director at the National Institutes of Health.

Combining two prostate drugs is a complete turnaround in prostate therapy. Before this research, urologists believed that men should take no more than one drug at a time.

Research supporting the anticipated improvements involved testing 3,047 men with a prostate disease called Benign Prostatic Hypertension (BPH) for nearly five years. Two of every three men who took two drugs in combination stopped their “BPH” from growing worse until it would otherwise require surgery or another type of less-invasive treatment.

The two-drug combination had the greatest benefits for men with the worst disease. Experts believe that one of the new therapy’s most helpful benefits will be to reduce future needs for hospitalization and painful prostate surgery.

Non-cancerous growth of the prostate usually begins before age 50, and continues throughout life, leading to difficult or excessive urination that currently affects an estimated 9 million U.S. men. Experts estimate that seven of every 10 U.S. men are currently troubled by the disease.

The success of the current research has led a different pharmaceutical company to announce additional international clinical trials of two totally different drugs known to relieve excessive prostate growth. Results of this test will not be known for several years.

In a separate development, a totally new drug therapy to cope with “BPH” has been approved by the FDA. Named alfuzosin, this drug is similar to several others in wide use. However, the makers claim it has been shown successful in avoiding the progression and complications of “BPH” and thereby reducing any need for more aggressive prostate therapy.

Additional information about this and other prostate problems, and available therapies, including prostate cancer and prostatis, are available at Or mail your request including your individual problem or interest to The American Prostate Society, P.O. Box 870, Hanover, MD 21076.

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