What is Prostate Cancer?

Prostate Cancer’ or PC is considered as the one of main types of cancer in men

‘Prostate Cancer’ or PC is considered as the one of main types of cancer in men, which is causing even more male deaths than breast cancer in women. The facts and figures regarding prostate cancer are alarming, it is estimated that 11,000 males die each year out of 47,000 men who contract it annually.

Four Things About Prostate Cancer that Men Must Know

  • The prostate gland is a reproductive organ which is designed protects the sperm in men by producing semen liquid. In younger men, it is approximately a walnut sized gland. Its location is right under the bladder behind the rectum. It surrounds the tube that the urine flows from called ‘urethra’. Its starts to grow further after the age of 40 years which is why a few men might feel difficulty in urinating as it gets bigger.
  • It is estimated that by the year 2020, about 300,000 new cases of prostate cancer will be reported worldwide. Prostate cancer after Skin cancer, is the second most diagnosed cancer amongst men. Typically, prostate cancer occurs after the age of 50 years with the average age of diagnosis in men at 67 years. One in every six men of such age is reported to be affected by the prostate cancer.
  • It is highly advisable for men to have screening for PC performed through a PSA blood scan. Consult your doctor to take an informed decision regarding when you need a screening and how often you need to be screened. German Medical Center recommends getting a Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) blood screening annually for men aged 50 and older. While men with symptoms and having African American heritage or those that have a family history of PC are usually at a higher risk and should start their screening at 40 years of age.
  • There is no need to panic as Prostate cancer grows very slowly in most of the cases. Even if a person is diagnosed with PC, it highly likely that he may live with it for another 20-30 years, in fact most men diagnosed with PC die from other causes than PC. Currently in the United States, more than 2.5 million men are living with prostate cancer.

Available Options for Treatment of Prostate Cancer

Many treatment options are available today to screen for PC. Depending on the complexity of the problem, the treatments range from active monitoring to state-of-the-art radical prostatectomies that can mitigate the side effects related to open surgery. Following list shows some of the available advanced treatment options:

  • Active Monitoring: This is the best option for men who are at low risk of prostate cancer. It is based on continuous periodical monitoring of the patient’s PSA levels and usually no treatment is prescribed by the doctor at this point.
  • Radical Prostatectomies: In case if someone needs to have his prostate removed, Radical Prostatectomies are suggested as minimally-invasive surgical option for faster recovery times, high precision and less pain.
  • Radiation Therapy: Men with prostate cancer have two options for radiation therapy: a) brachytherapy which is often referred to as radiation ‘seeds’ and b) therapy through external beam radiation. Treatment through External beam radiation is performed through radiation beams focused towards Prostate, externally from a machine. Brachytherapy employs small radioactive seeds similar to the grain of rice in size which are placed directly into your prostate.
  • Hormone Deprivation Therapy: If the prostate cancer is at the advanced level, you may undergo hormone deprivation therapy. Testosterone fuels the growth of the prostate and prostate cancer. Reducing levels of testosterone will help slow that rate of growth.

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