Chemoprevention of prostate cancer: what can be recommended to patients?

Curr Urol Rep. 2009 May;10(3):165-71. doi: 10.1007/s11934-009-0029-4.


Prostate cancer is third to lung and colon cancer as the cause of cancer-related deaths in American men. It is estimated that there will have been more than 28,000 deaths and 186,000 new cases in 2008 that will impose a significant burden on national health care costs. Chemoprevention aims to reduce both incidence and mortality through the use of agents to prevent, reverse, or delay the carcinogenic process. This study provides clinicians with information on some chemoprevention agents that have been considered to reduce prostate cancer risks, including 5-alpha-reductase inhibitors; statins (a class of compounds used to reduce cholesterol); NSAIDs; selenium; vitamins E and D; lycopene; allium vegetables (garlic, scallions, onions, chives, and leeks); soy/isoflavones; and green tea polyphenols. The evidence to support prostate cancer risk reduction benefits for each chemoprevention agent based on a review of the literature is provided.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / therapeutic use
  • Chemoprevention / methods*
  • Cholestenone 5 alpha-Reductase / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Enzyme Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Flavonoids / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Isoflavones / therapeutic use
  • Male
  • Phenols / therapeutic use
  • Polyphenols
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / prevention & control*
  • Selenium / therapeutic use
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Vitamin D / therapeutic use
  • Vitamin E / therapeutic use
  • Vitamins / therapeutic use


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Enzyme Inhibitors
  • Flavonoids
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors
  • Isoflavones
  • Phenols
  • Polyphenols
  • Vitamins
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin E
  • Cholestenone 5 alpha-Reductase
  • Selenium