What is Prostate Cancer and what are the Risk Factors?
Prostate cancer develops in a manís prostate. The prostate is a walnut-sized gland located just below the bladder. The prostate produces some of the fluid in semen.
Prostate cancer occurs when the cells in the prostate gland grow and divide abnormally and out of control.
Prostate cancer is the most common form of cancer in men, second only to skin cancer. Most forms of prostate cancer grow slowly, but some types are very aggressive and can spread quickly without treatment.
Some of the treatment options for prostate cancer are: surgery, chemotherapy, cryotherapy, hormonal therapy and radiation.
There is also continual research going on to improve the treatment options for prostate cancer patients, and hopefully in the future there will be a cure for it.
There are some risk factors that you cannot control. As men grow older, particularly after age 50, men become at higher risk for having prostate cancer. Studies show that after age 70 most men have some form of prostate cancer. It also tends to run in families.
If you have a brother, father or grandfather with it then your risk for having it increases. Studies have also found that African-American males seem to be at greater risk for having prostate cancer, as well.
There are some risk factors that you can control and may help you keep prostate cancer at bay.
A high fat diet may contribute to the growth of cancerous prostate cells. A diet rich in fatty meats and high fat dairy products, but low in fruits and vegetables may also prove to be a link.
The early stages of prostate cancer have proven to show little to none of the outward signs and symptoms. The only way to catch prostate cancer early is through screening tests. The tests can help to find slow-growing cancers.
There are differing opinions on what age you should start to have regular screenings. It is something that you should discuss with your health care professional.
Some recommendations are: after age 50 for average risk men that would normally live 10 or more years, 45 years for men that fall in any of the high risk categories, 40 for men with more than one close relative that was diagnosed at an early age.
With these high risk factors for men it would be wise to have regular screenings for prostate cancer as you find yourself in any of these categories.
The Prostate Cancer Research Institute is a charitable institution that is intended to improve the quality of menís lives by supporting the research and disseminating information about prostate cancer prevention. It also helps to create awareness and empowers patients, families and the medical community.