Check for Prostate cancer

Check for Prostate cancer

Prostate cancer is a killer, many people don’t realise that they have it until it is too late because symptoms aren’t aggressive. Here is some info published by the BBC that every man should be aware of.

The prostate gland is located below the bladder and in front of the rectum. It’s about the size of a walnut, producing the liquid that nourishes, protects and carries sperm on ejaculation. It tends to increase in size with age, called benign prostatic hypertrophy, causing symptoms in some men like urinary frequency.

Often prostate cancer doesn’t have any symptoms, but when they do occur they may include:
The need to urinate more frequently
Disturbed sleep because of the need to urinate
Difficulty or pain when passing water
Delay or hesitancy before urinating
A feeling that the bladder has not completely emptied

It’s important to be aware that there are a number of other, non-cancerous medical conditions that may also cause these symptoms.
In advanced prostate cancer, the following symptoms may occur:
Weight loss
Bone pain
Pain in the loins, pelvis or lower back
Blood in the urine

Causes and risk factors:
Cases are rare in men aged under 50, and risk factors include:
Being overweight or obese.
Having a father or brother with prostate cancer.
Being of African-Caribbean or African-American descent and in western countries.

If diagnosed early, treatment can be quite successful. Therefore, it’s important to be aware of the symptoms and to see a doctor as early as possible.

Most men with early prostate cancer are diagnosed because they have problems with bladder habits. A GP will perform a digital rectal examination (DRE) and arrange for any blood tests (a prostate specific antigen or PSA test). If this is elevated there is a possibility it may have been caused by prostate cancer. Patients are then referred to a specialist (urologist) for further investigations.

Treatment depends on a number of factors, primarily whether the cancer is contained within the prostate (localised) or has spread around the body (advanced). Not all treatment options are suitable for everyone. Generally, for very early, good prognosis prostate cancer, all four options can be considered but have their pros and cons, so you should discuss what’s best for you with your doctor.

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