What are the symptoms of prostate cancer? Here’s the thing – you won’t notice any.
“Prostate cancer is not symptomatic until late, so screening is important,” Dr. Michelle Yu, a urological oncology fellow at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, told Today.
Symptoms of prostate cancer may include:
- Blood in urine
- Kidney or stomach pain
- night sweats
- Weight loss
- bone pain
Yu said that by the time men notice such symptoms, the possibility of cancer has spread to other parts of the body and will be very difficult to treat. (Of course, some of these symptoms may be caused by other conditions.)
What is prostate cancer
Prostate cancer develops when cells in the prostate, a gland that is important for male reproduction, grow abnormally. This type of cancer often grows slowly.
“One in nine men – it’s incredibly common,” Dr. Said Rana McKay, assistant clinical professor at the University of California San Diego and spokesperson for the Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF). “It’s some stigma due to the type of disease. We need to raise awareness.”
A lot of high-profile men have helped raise awareness of prostate cancer by coming forward with their own stories about screening, diagnosis and treatment.
Some high-profile men with prostate cancer include:
When should men be examined?
Good News? Screening is easy and effective. “The most important thing is the screening,” McKay said.
Prostate cancer is one of those diseases where early screening and early screening improve outcomes. PCF reports that approximately 95% of prostate cancer is detected before the cancer has spread outside the prostate.
And the prostate cancer survival rate is 99% after five years. “The good news is that the majority of people diagnosed with prostate cancer do not die of their disease, given the effectiveness of the treatment,” McKay said.
Your doctor can help evaluate your risk and suggest the best time to start screening.
According to PCF, screening usually begins:
- Age 40 for men with a family history of prostate cancer
- Age 45 for African American men who are at high risk
- Age 50 for men who do not fit into those categories
“The number one thing men can do is ask your doctor if they are eligible for an investigation,” McKay said.
Here’s how screening works
To screen for prostate cancer, your doctor will perform a digital rectal examination (DRE). This test involves inserting a finger into your rectum to feel any irregularity in the prostate. The test can be uncomfortable, but it is brief, and it is an important step towards quickly exposing prostate cancer.
Your doctor will also examine your blood to measure the level of prostate specific antigen (PSA). PSA levels rise when there is a problem with the prostate – this problem may be prostate cancer, infection, or other condition.
Here’s how you can reduce your risk
What are the causes of prostate cancer It is not clear at all. Mechanet said that both genetics and environmental factors play a role. One in 10 men have a genetic tendency for prostate cancer.
Diet, exercise and quitting smoking can help reduce your risk for developing prostate cancer. Choose a diet low in fat and processed carbohydrates, and maintain healthy body weight to help reduce your risk of developing more aggressive prostate cancer.
Also, some studies suggest that having sex repeatedly can reduce your risk.
Treatment advances bring more options
If your DRE shows an abnormality or your PSA has increased in number, your doctor will probably recommend a biopsy of the prostate as well as may recommend MRI or other imaging studies.
If you are diagnosed with prostate cancer, you have several treatment options depending on your age, overall health, and how quickly your cancer was caught – the stages of prostate cancer depend on how it is Has been upgraded.
“The treatment scenario is evolving rapidly,” said McKay. “The last decade has introduced many more drugs that work better and inspire people to live longer and live better lives.”
Treatment options include prostate cancer surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy and hormone treatment. Your doctor may also recommend active monitoring, including monitoring your cancer symptoms that are progressing.
“Ask your provider any questions,” Yu said, “and take charge of your own health discussion.”