New systemic therapies for metastatic prostate cancer (PCa) are changing the natural history of the disease, with patients experiencing more visceral metastases now than in the past, according to study findings presented at the 2019 American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting in Chicago.

Nellie Nafissi, MD, of Mayo Clinic Arizona in Phoenix, and colleagues at other Mayo Clinic facilities retrospectively analyzed 164 patients with metastatic PCa who had imaging studies performed within 6 months of death. Overall, the mean age at death was 77.4 years.

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Overall, the rates of visceral and distant metastases to the lung, liver, adrenal gland, brain, kidneys, spleen, and thyroid gland were higher among patients who died in 2016 than in those who died in 2009 (40% vs 26%), Dr Nafissi’s team reported. The investigators observed a particularly large increase in visceral metastases to the lung, with 26.3% of patients developing lung metastases in 2016 compared with 13% in 2009.

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“These changes will drive the need for new treatment approaches targeting visceral metastases,” the authors concluded in their study abstract.

Patients who died in 2009 received a median of 3 systemic treatments compared with 4 in those who died in 2016. In addition, 44% of patients who died in 2016 received 5 or more lines of systemic treatments compared with 26.1% of those who died in 2009.


Nafissi N, Bryce AH, Kosiorek HE, et al. Evolving natural history of metastatic prostate cancer. Presented at the 2019 American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting in Chicago, May 31 to June 4. Abstract 5063.

This article originally appeared on Renal and Urology News