Natural products are getting popular among patients as therapy for many diseases. However these remedies should be proven scientifically as some may be hazardous with no proven benefits. Cassava root, used as a carbohydrate rich food in many countries is promoted as a cure for prostate and bladder cancer. Serum prostate specific antigen is a sensitive tumour marker which corresponds to the activity of malignant cells in patients with acinar adenocarcinoma of prostate. We report a patient with hormone-resistant prostate cancer whose serum PSA level continued to rise despite consumption of large quantities of boiled roots of cassava indicating its ineffectiveness in controlling the prostate cancer. Though this is a single case, it provides guidance to health care workers who look after patients with castration-resistant prostate cancer in the absence of more comprehensive research on cassava and its effectiveness on prostate cancer.
Keywords: Tapioca, manioc, herbal medicine, prostatic carcinoma, treatment