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The new study was sponsored by Avodart’s maker, GlaxoSmithKline. Avodart and Proscar cost about $4 a pill; generic versions of Proscar are available for about $2. Proscar is similar to Avodart but has not been tested for treating early cancer as this study did.

Sandler said Avodart might relieve some men’s anxiety about monitoring their disease and may make them more comfortable not having immediate treatment.

“If it was me, I’d choose active surveillance,” he said. Avodart “has the potential to be an important help.”

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Online:

Prostate cancer info: http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/types/prostate

and http://tinyurl.com/ASCOanswers

Risk calculator: http://tinyurl.com/riskcalculator