- Cancer Information
- Advanced cancer
- Living with advanced cancer
- Treatment for advanced cancer
- Hormone therapy
Some cancers grow in response to particular hormones. These cancers are known as hormone-dependent cancers. Hormone therapy (also called endocrine therapy) uses synthetic hormones to block the effect of the body’s natural hormones. The aim is to lower the amount of hormones the tumour receives. This can help slow down the spread of the cancer.
If you have breast or uterine cancer, you may be offered hormone therapy. If you have prostate cancer, the therapy is known as androgen deprivation therapy (ADT).
Common side effects include:
- hot flushes
- mood changes
- weight gain
Other side effects may impact your sex life, including changes in sex drive, trouble getting or keeping erections or vaginal dryness. Hormone therapy can also affect your fertility. It may bring on menopause symptoms in females. If you have already been through menopause, hormone drugs called aromatase inhibitors may be used.
Podcast: Treatment Options for Advanced Cancer
Dr Lucy Gately, Medical Oncologist, Alfred Health and Walter and Eliza Institute for Medical Research, VIC; Dr Katherine Allsopp, Supportive and Palliative Care Specialist, Westmead Hospital, NSW; A/Prof Megan Best, The University of Notre Dame Australia and The University of Sydney, NSW; Dr Keiron Bradley, Palliative Care Consultant, Medical Director Palliative Care Program, Bethesda Health Care, WA; Craig Brewer, Consumer; Emeritus Professor Phyllis Butow, Psychologist, The University of Sydney and Chris O’Brien Lifehouse, NSW; Louise Durham, Palliative Care Nurse Practitioner Outpatients, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Metro South Palliative Care, QLD; Dr Roya Merie, Radiation Oncologist, ICON Cancer Centre, Concord, NSW; Penny Neller, Project Coordinator, National Palliative Care Projects, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, Queensland University of Technology, QLD; Caitriona Nienaber, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council WA; Xanthe Sansome, Program Director, Advance Care Planning Australia, VIC; Sparke Helmore Lawyers; Peter Spolc, Consumer.
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