Study Finds Long-Term Benefits With Finasteride
Men with BPH who take finasteride (Proscar) are at reduced risk
for acute urinary retention (AUR) and are less likely to require
surgery to treat the condition, according to six-year results
from the Proscar Long-Term Efficacy and Safety Study (PLESS).
The current study is an extension of a four-year trial of more
than 3,000 BPH patients who were randomly assigned to 5 mg of
finasteride daily or a placebo. In the four-year trial, patients
on the drug had a 57% lower risk of developing AUR compared with
men taking a placebo, and were 55% less likely to require surgery
to treat BPH symptoms.
After the four years, participants on the placebo were given
the option of switching to finasteride. Two years later, results
with more than 2,400 men found that those who had taken finasteride
for six years continued to have lower rates of AUR and BPH surgery
than those taking a placebo. Those who switched to finasteride
had reductions in AUR and BPH surgery that approached levels
found in the men who had taken the drug long term.
The researchers concluded that “finasteride treatment
led to a sustained decrease in the incidence of AUR and/or BPH–related
The Journal of Urology
Volume 171, page 1194