Prostate Cancer - Serious Issue in Males after 40
Posted: Jul 08, 2014
Prostate cancer is one of the commonest problems in which men are asymptomatic in initial stages. Other ailments associated with prostate gland are prostatitis (inflammation of prostate), and benign enlargement of prostate (BEP) that cause urinary troubles like dysuria (pain or difficulty during micturition). To identify any problems of prostate, you just need to undergo a simple test known as digital rectal examination. Early detection is very important in case of prostate cancer, to assess the stage; it also helps in curing the cancer with timely treatment.
What are the facts related to prostate ailments?
- 1 out of 10 men suffers from prostate cancer
- Approximately 80% of men develop benign enlargement of prostate (BEP)
- In United States, nearly 30,000 men die due to prostate cancer
- Prostate cancer usually occurs in men after the age of 50 (or after 45 in men with strong family history of prostate cancer)
- Annual digital rectal examination helps you in detecting prostate ailments
- Prostate malignancy is curable, if detect early in initial stage
What are the causative factors?
The risk of prostate cancer is high in African American men, adult males who are older than 60 years, and men who have strong familial history of malignancy (genetic influence). Other factors causing malignancy of prostate are obesity, unhealthy dietary habits (especially animal fat), unhealthy lifestyles (excessive smoking, alcoholism), etc. People who are at higher risk of getting prostate malignancy are farmers, painters, tire plant workers, and men working in areas that are exposed to cadmium. Researchers say people who are vegetarians are less likely to develop prostate ailments.
Signs and symptoms –
As said earlier, in initial stages of prostate cancer, men are asymptomatic. As the tumor progresses gradually, few symptoms may occur, such as –
- Delayed micturition
- After urination, leakage or dribbling of urine
- Oliguria (not enough urine)
- Increases urination at night (nocturia)
- Straining while urination with pain (Dysuria)
- Hematuria (blood in urine)
In case of advanced stages, men may suffer from pain or tenderness in pelvic bones and lower back.
Investigations to detect carcinoma of the prostate –
Any abnormality in digital rectal examination suggests prostate cancer. It is the procedure that is performed by your doctor by assessing your rectum and internal organs.
A simple blood test called as PSA (prostate-specific antigen) is done in case of prostate ailments. If your PSA level is on the higher side, your physician may ask you to get a biopsy done.
Biopsy – It is a procedure performed by your surgeon by removing a small part of your prostate. This part is then sent for histopathological evaluation i.e. done in laboratory set-up. Biopsy report will detect the grades of prostate cancer.
In case of metastasis, your physician may tell you to undergo CT scan, MRI scan or bone scan.
Treatment for prostate cancer –
Your doctor may suggest you chemotherapy, radiation therapy, hormone therapy or surgery depending on the stage of the disease. But the most common practice in treating carcinoma of the prostate is surgical intervention (radical prostatectomy). Radiation therapy such as brachytherapy (internal radiotherapy) and proton therapy are used to manage the malignancy. Immunotherapy is also used in some cases. After the management of carcinoma, your doctor may closely assess you by regular check-ups. In incurable cases, hormone therapy is used to control the disease that improves the survival rate.
Prevention of prostate cancer Healthy diet and lifestyle – You doctor may tell you to consume healthy diet that is rich in essential nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, etc. You can consume foods such as cruciferous vegetables, beans, soy, legumes, and fish but there is no strong evidence about the diet associated with prevention of prostate ailments. Avoid smoking and alcohol. There are no specific medications that help in preventing the carcinoma of prostate.
After the age of 40, one should go for regular medical check-ups, especially digital rectal examination in case of urinary troubles.
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