(HealthDay News) — Men undergoing androgen-deprivation therapy (ADT) to treat prostate cancer may experience impaired cognitive function within the first 6 months that persists for at least a year, a new study suggests. The report was published online in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Brian Gonzalez, Ph.D., of the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Fla., and colleagues evaluated 58 prostate cancer patients before they began ADT and 6 months and 12 months later. The investigators compared them with 84 men who were treated with prostatectomy and 88 men without prostate cancer.

Impaired cognitive functioning was worse for men receiving ADT. But men with the gene mutation rs1047776 were 14 times more likely to have cognitive issues related to ADT than men without this mutation, Gonzalez told HealthDay.

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“Men who are considering hormone therapy for prostate cancer should be aware of the possible mental side effects,” Gonzalez said. Gonzalez suspects altering testosterone levels might cause cognitive impairment. But men on ADT also experience fatigue and depression, which might affect their mental abilities, too, he said.


  1. Gonzalez, BD, et al. Journal of Clinical Oncology, published online before print May 11, 2015; doi: 10.1200/JCO.2014.60.1963.