October 14, 2008

Prostate Drug Not Linked to Hip Fracture

Use of a class of medications for treating an enlarged prostate is not associated with an increased hip fracture risk, U.S. researchers said.

Benign prostatic hyperplasia, or an enlarged prostate, is a common condition that affects some 8 million U.S. men and treatment includes surgical procedures, minimally invasive procedures and medications. Most often the first-line therapy is pharmacological, using either alpha-blockers, or 5-alpha reductase inhibitors such as finasteride or dutasteridee.

Dr. Steven J. Jacobsen of Kaiser Permanente Southern California in Pasadena, Calif., said the study included 7,076 men, 45 years and older, who experienced a hip fracture between 1997 to 2006. Control patients were 7,076 men without a hip fracture during the study period. From 1991 to 2006, finasteride was the only 5-alpha reductase inhibitor dispensed to study patients, and 109 case patients and 141 control patients had a history of any exposure to these compounds.

The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, found that 36 percent of the men with hip fracture and 35 percent of the men without hip fracture had a prior diagnosis of enlarged prostate.