Friday, 9 October 2009

Long Term Pentoxifylline Treatment / Rebound Effect

I do think that if people are going to go the pentoxifylline route, there is good reason to stick with it for quite some time. One study relating to breast cancer radiation treatment which resulted in fibrosis, showed that stopping pentoxifylline treatment too soon resulted in a rebound effect in the condition (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16260695). Another recent study in rats with radiation induced heart disease shows the same thing: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19306752

Interestingly, the first study relating to superficial radiation-induced fibrosis suggested that progress can be made with pentoxifylline over a period of years. Admittedly the biggest improvements are made over the first 6 months, but in the long-term useage group, patients continued make slight improvements for upto two years. This is something that goes against the "six months" recommendation of some urologists.

Of course we cannot state that fibrosis in peyronie's disease behaves the same as in other conditions, but improvement over years combined with the rebound effect issue suggests that if pentoxifylline does appear to be working for you at six months to a year, continuing to use it may ensure that the improvements stand the test of time. Of course if there is no improvement at one year, then the case for taking it is much less robust. I'd make an exception for that if the condition is still active though (inflammation still present), as that suggests that plaque formation is either actively occuring or is further down the line. In those with plaque present for many years, the breast cancer study does appear to suggest that in those cases, pentoxiflline can take much longer to show promise.

If you're new to peyronie's disease, it's important to know that getting on top of this condition in the very early stages is a very wise decision, and pentoxifylline should be part of that process. I cringe when I hear people say that their urologist proposes a "wait and see" approach. What exactly is to be gained from that?

Reminder: Pentoxiflynne has worked well with L-arginine and Viagra (or levitra/cialis) in animal models, and tends to be the oral treatment put forward by some of the leading urologists.

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