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September 1950

PROSTATIC CANCER: Further Investigation of Hormonal Relationships

Author Affiliations

From the James Buchanan Brady Urological Institute, Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore.

Arch Surg. 1950;61(3):433-440. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1950.01250020438003

IN 1941 research in prostatic cancer received great impetus from the discovery by Huggins and his associates1 that remarkable regression occurred clinically in the primary neoplasm and its metastases after castration or administration of estrogen. These findings were subsequently verified by others.2 Unfortunately, the gratifying improvement manifested by most patients treated in this manner has since been found to be only temporary, and no actual cures have ever been recorded. Furthermore, postmortem studies on patients in whom no palpable or roentgenologic evidence of local or distant recurrence was evident just before death have shown extensive involvement of the prostate, bones and soft tissues. In all cases in which radical perineal prostatectomy has been done for advanced cancer after preoperative administration of estrogen, malignant cells have been readily demonstrated in the surgical specimens.3 We have thus been forced to conclude that although existing methods of endocrine manipulation have

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