September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month
Early detection is the key to successful treatment.
Different men have different symptoms for prostate cancer. Some men do not have symptoms at all. Some symptoms of prostate cancer are:
* Difficulty starting urination.
* Weak or interrupted flow of urine.
* Frequent urination, especially at night.
* Difficulty emptying the bladder completely.
* Pain or burning during urination.
* Blood in the urine or semen.
* Pain in the back, hips, or pelvis that doesn’t go away.
* Painful ejaculation.
If you have any symptoms that worry you, be sure to see your doctor right away. Keep in mind that these symptoms may be caused by conditions other than prostate cancer.
Prostate screening means looking for prostate cancer before it causes symptoms. However, most prostate cancers grow slowly or not at all. Two tests are commonly used to screen for prostate cancer:
* Digital rectal exam (DRE): A doctor or nurse inserts a gloved, lubricated finger into the rectum to estimate the size of the prostate and feel for lumps or other abnormalities.
* Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA): This test measures the level of PSA in the blood. PSA is a substance made by the prostate. The levels of PSA in the blood can be higher in men who have prostate cancer. The PSA level may also be elevated in other conditions that affect the prostate.
As a rule, the higher the PSA level in the blood, the more likely a prostate problem is present. But many factors, such as age and race, can affect PSA levels. Some prostate glands make more PSA than others. Because many factors can affect PSA levels, your doctor is the best person to interpret your PSA test results. Only a biopsy can diagnose prostate cancer for sure. If you are diagnosed with prostate cancer, there are different types of treatment that are available. You and your doctor will decide which treatment is right for you.
In the USA, about 180,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year, and almost 26,000 die from it. Men, designate this month to talk to your healthcare provider about prostate cancer and early detection. Significant others, support men by discussing prostate cancer and encouraging them to talk to their healthcare provider about prostate cancer and early detection. Early detection is the key to successful treatment.