A part of the male reproductive system. It is a gland that is close to the urinary system and secretes much of the liquid of semen. It is found under the bladder and in front of the rectum. Prostate cancer occurs when malignant cells develop in the prostate. Although there is no routine screening for this cancer, there are several different ways that it can be detected:
- Digital Rectal Exam, where the prostate is felt for abnormalities by inserting gloved fingers into the rectum
- Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) Test, where the amount of PSA in the blood is measured
- Transrectal Ultrasound (TRUS), where sound waves from a small probe create a visual image of the prostate
- Biopsy, where a tissue sample is removed and examined
Prostate Cancer StatisticsProstate cancer affects approximately 1 out of 6 men. It is the most common cancer that affects men outside of skin cancers. Keeping a close eye on PSA levels can help to detect this cancer, even without warning signs. Thus it is recommended that men begin regular PSA tests from the age of 40 onward.
Causes of Prostate CancerAlthough prostate cancer is relatively rare for men under 50, more than half of all men will likely have some form of the cancer by the age of 80. If a father or brother in a man’s family had prostate cancer, that man’s chances of developing the cancer double. This risk increases if you have several relatives who have had the cancer. The presence of gene mutations of the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes, linked to breast and ovarian cancer, may also increase prostate cancer risk. African-American men are at the highest risk of developing the cancer.
Common Prostate Cancer SymptomsThe early stages of prostate cancer might not give off any symptoms, but can still be detected through a PSA test. If symptoms do show up, they might include the following:
- Frequent need to urinate
- Trouble while urinating or inability to do so
- Urinary incontinence
- Urinary flow that is weak or interrupted
- Urination that burns or is painful
- Blood in semen or the urine (hematuria)
- Painful ejaculation
- Frequent pain in the pelvis, hips, upper thighs, or lower back
Treating Prostate CancerSome types of cancer are treated with a prostatectomy, where the prostate is removed, and some radiation therapy. Other treatment options include:
- Watchful Waiting, where the advancement of the cancer is so slow that it is unlikely to cause issues within the man’s lifetime
- Hormone Therapy, which may slow or halt the cancer growth, but cause side effects such as impotence
- Cryosurgery, which uses liquid nitrogen to freeze and kill prostate cancer cells
Prostate Cancer PrognosisAlthough prognosis and treatment depends on the cancer stage, prostate cancer is quite treatable if caught early. 33 out of 34 men diagnosed will survive prostate cancer. Patients are also usually able to have active and productive lives following their cancer treatments.
Call Us at miVIPCall us today at 855-496-4847 if you think you might be suffering from prostate cancer.