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JAMA Revisited
February 10, 2015

Of Fires and Frying Pans

Author Affiliations
 

May 15, 1954

 

JAMA.1954;155( (3) ):302.

JAMA. 2015;313(6):632. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.11576

To the Editor:—One out of every five men over 50 years of age has carcinoma of the prostate. The growth of carcinoma of the prostate is stimulated by testosterone. Does more need to be said? Do we need to undertake a detailed consideration of the advisability of giving men over 50 a medicament that is possibly, probably, or potentially harmful to 20% of them? Apparently, the answer is yes. Four times in this past week we have received advertising folders from pharmaceutical firms highly recommending that we so prescribe for our patients. Testosterone has been advocated for some time for a rather vague group of conditions in older men, and recently there has been a wave of enthusiasm for a combination of androgenic and estrogenic substances presumed to provide a “balanced” hormonal therapy especially beneficial in geriatric practice.

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