Prostate Cancer Warning Signs
Prostate cancer is relatively common among men in general, but only a very small percentage actually develop a clinically significant form of it. And an even smaller percentage of prostate cancers progress to cause serious health problems. To avoid this latter type, it’s important to educate yourself and be aware of the most common warning signs of prostate cancer in men.
If you experience any of the following signs and symptoms, it doesn’t necessarily mean you have prostate cancer, but it is a great opportunity to start a conversation with an experienced specialist like those at miVIP.
1. Frequent urination: An enlarged prostate gland can put increased pressure on the bladder and urethra, causing the urge to urinate frequently, especially at night (called nocturia). Often the need may be urgent. The National Institutes of Health defines frequent urination as eight or more times per day.
2. Weak or interrupted urinary flow or velocity: Increased pressure on the urethra can block the flow of urine from the bladder through the penis. This makes it difficult to start urinating and can cause weak or interrupted urinary flow, often referred to as dribbling. If urinating takes more time than it used to, the cancer may be pushing on the bladder or urethra, preventing proper urination.
3. Pain or burning during urination: If you experience pain during urination, your bladder or urethra may be inflamed. The acidity in the urine can result in a painful burning sensation throughout the urethra.
4. Blood in the urine: Prostate cancer tumors can damage the blood vessels, resulting in blood in your urine, also know as hematuria. Another cause of bloody urine may be a urinary tract infection due to an enlarged prostate. If you see blood in your urine, call your doctor right away.
5. New onset of erectile dysfunction: Erectile dysfunction can result from prostate cancer or its treatment, including surgery, radiation or hormone treatments. Medications, vacuum devices that assist in achieving erection and surgery are available to treat erectile dysfunction.
6. Painful ejaculation: When swelling occurs in the prostate, the gland becomes sensitive, causing pain when you ejaculate.
7. Blood in the semen: Blood in the semen is called hematospermia or hemospermia. This is a symptom often overlooked, so it’s not known how common it actually is. The most common cause of blood in the semen is infection and inflammation in any of the glands, tubes, or ducts that produce and move semen from the body, including the prostate.
8. Back pain or muscle tenderness: Feeling pressure on your spinal column is a more serious symptom of prostate cancer as it may mean it has spread to your spinal cord. This will result in back tenderness, pain, muscle loss and sometimes loss of sensation in your back.