A prospective clinical trial of green tea for hormone refractory prostate cancer: an evaluation of the complementary/alternative therapy approach

Urol Oncol. 2005 Mar-Apr;23(2):108-13. doi: 10.1016/j.urolonc.2004.10.008.


Purpose: To evaluate the efficacy and toxicity of green tea, prescribed as an alternative complementary (CAM) formulation on hormone refractory prostate cancer (HRPC).

Methods: Patients with HRCP were prescribed green tea extract capsules at a dose level of 250 mg twice daily. Efficacy and toxicity were evaluated during monthly visits. The primary endpoint was prostate-specific antigen (PSA) or measurable disease progression after a minimum of 2 months of therapy.

Results: Nineteen patients were enrolled into the study. The treatment was generally well tolerated. Twelve patients reported at least one side effect; only two of these were of moderate or severe grade. Primary toxicity was related to gastrointestinal irritation or caffeine intake. Four patients did not complete the minimum 2 months of therapy because of: intolerance (two patients), physician stoppage (one patient), death from cerebrovascular accident (one patient). Fifteen patients completed at least 2 months of therapy. Nine of these patients had progressive disease within 2 months of starting therapy. Six patients developed progressive disease after additional 1 to 4 months of therapy.

Conclusion: Green tea, as CAM therapy, was found to have minimal clinical activity against hormone refractory prostate cancer.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Hormonal / pharmacology
  • Complementary Therapies*
  • Disease Progression
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen / blood
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Tea* / adverse effects


  • Antineoplastic Agents, Hormonal
  • Tea
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen