Tags: beta | carotene | radiation | antioxidant | prostate

Antioxidant use OK With Radiation

Tuesday, 05 June 2012 12:49 PM

Health experts have raised concerns about prostate cancer patients who take the antioxidant beta-carotene during radiation treatment. But a new study has found antioxidant supplements do not increase the risk of cancer death or the spread of tumors and are safe and don’t compromise the treatment’s effects.
The study, published in the International Journal of Radiation Oncology, may put to rest past concerns about the use of beta-carotene for patients undergoing conventional radiation treatment.
"This study shows that antioxidant supplementation with beta-carotene during radiation therapy does not appear to detract from the benefit of radiation therapy," said lead researcher Dr. Danielle Margalit, a radiation oncologist at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. "It also suggests that patients may continue to eat a well-balanced diet that contains foods with natural sources of antioxidants at the recommended daily amount."
Many cancer patients take vitamin supplements and antioxidants in an effort to boost their health and the body’s immune system, but the safety of their use during radiation treatments for prostate cancer has been controversial. Radiation therapy targets tumor cells by activating the pro-oxidant effects of DNA, but some scientists have suggested supplemental antioxidants may weaken the oxidizing effects of radiation and promote cancer recurrence.
In latest study, the largest to date of its kind, Margalit and her colleagues tracked 383 prostate cancer patients who received either beta-carotene or a placebo along with radiation treatment to determine if antioxidants could potentially counteract the therapy’s effects and increase the risk of death or metastases.
Researchers found no significant differences between the patients who took beta-carotene and those who did not.

© HealthDay

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Beta-carotene doesn't raise risks for prostate cancer patients receiving radiation.
Tuesday, 05 June 2012 12:49 PM
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