How is metastatic prostate cancer treated?

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Metastatic prostate cancer treatments aim to slow down the growth and spread of the cancer, relieve any symptoms you have and improve your quality of life.

Although it isn't possible to cure metastatic prostate cancer with current treatments, there are many treatments that can keep the cancer and its symptoms under control, sometimes for many years. For some men, living with metastatic prostate cancer is like living with a chronic (long-term) illness. Your specialist will tell you about the likely progress of your cancer and what you might expect.

Read more about the side-effects and symptoms of metastatic prostate cancer

Hormone therapy for metastatic prostate cancer

Injections or tablets to control the cancer. This is the main treatment for metastatic prostate cancer. Read more about hormone therapy.

Other treatments for metastatic prostate cancer

You may have other treatments, in combination with your hormone therapy or as an alternative:

Other hormone treatments

Chemotherapy: Drugs to slow down and control the growth of the cancer. Read more about chemotherapy.

Radiotherapy: X-ray treatments or injections to control the disease and relieve symptoms. Read more about radiotherapy for metastatic prostate cancer.

SteroidsYou might have steroids along with another treatment or on their own. Steroids can help to reduce the side-effects of certain drug treatments. Read more about steroids.

Bone-strengthening drugs: Tablets to prevent and treat bone problems. Read more about bone-strengthening drugs.

A medical oncologist is a doctor who specialises in treating cancer with drug treatments. These are often used for advanced (metastatic) cancer.

Palliative care

Palliative care doctors and nurses are experts in managing the symptoms of advanced cancer, such as pain, tiredness or constipation. They are also very experienced in supporting you emotionally with the knowledge that your cancer has advanced and your worries around this. They are also called the symptom control team. 

Having palliative care doesn’t mean that you’re at the end of your life. The expertise of the palliative care team means that existing symptoms can be better managed and new problems can be spotted and treated early, to help you to feel as well as possible, including while you are having other active treatments like chemotherapy. 

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