Dr. Buffington on Degarelix and Appropriate Patients

Philip J. Buffington, MD
Published: Saturday, Nov 07, 2015



Philip J. Buffington, MD, chief medical officer at The Urology Group, discusses administering degarelix (Firmagon) and determining which patients to treat with the hormonal therapy.

Unlike the common hormone LHRH-agonist therapy, degarelix does not cause a “flare,” or initial increase in testosterone, during the first few weeks of treatment. However, patients need to be injected with degarelix once per month, whereas an LHRH drug can be administered every 4 to 6 months. Buffington says that he believes newer versions of degarelix will be longer-acting.

In addition, Buffington says that he always tries to use degarelix for patients with a very elevated PSA with widespread metastatic disease in the bones, bone pain, or partial paralysis in order to avoid a flare phenomenon.



Philip J. Buffington, MD, chief medical officer at The Urology Group, discusses administering degarelix (Firmagon) and determining which patients to treat with the hormonal therapy.

Unlike the common hormone LHRH-agonist therapy, degarelix does not cause a “flare,” or initial increase in testosterone, during the first few weeks of treatment. However, patients need to be injected with degarelix once per month, whereas an LHRH drug can be administered every 4 to 6 months. Buffington says that he believes newer versions of degarelix will be longer-acting.

In addition, Buffington says that he always tries to use degarelix for patients with a very elevated PSA with widespread metastatic disease in the bones, bone pain, or partial paralysis in order to avoid a flare phenomenon.


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