Other than skin cancer, prostate cancer is the most common cancer in American men. It is the second leading cause of cancer death in American men, behind only lung cancer. The American Cancer Society’s estimates about 238,590 new cases for prostate cancer will be diagnosed in the United States in 2013. About 1 man in 6 will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime.
Prostate cancer occurs mainly in older men. Nearly two thirds are diagnosed in men aged 65 or older, and it is rare before age 40. The average age at the time of diagnosis is about 67.
Prostate cancer can be a serious disease, but most men diagnosed with prostate cancer do not die from it. In fact, more than 2.5 million men in the United States who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer at some point are still alive today.
What are the symptoms of prostate cancer?
In its early stages, prostate cancer often causes no symptoms. When symptoms do occur, they may include any of the following:
- dull pain in the lower pelvic area;
- frequent urination;
- problems with urination such as the inability, pain, burning, weakened urine flow;
- blood in the urine or semen;
- painful ejaculation;
- general pain in the lower back, hips or upper thighs;
- loss of appetite and/or weight;
- persistent bone pain
The American Urological Association recommends that healthy men over the age of 40 should consider obtaining a baseline prostate cancer screening with a DRE and PSA test. Evidence from research studies suggest that combining both tests improves the overall rate of prostate cancer detection.
Men should discuss with their physicians about their need to have a prostate cancer screening; which helps maintain proper prostate health. For more information please refer to the American Urological Association prostate cancer screening brochure:
Prostate Cancer Screening- What You Should Know
It is important to realize that in most cases an abnormality in either test is not due to cancer but to benign conditions, the most common being BPH or prostatitis.
For addition information, visit The American Urological Association Foundation at www.urologyhealth.org