Prostate Cancer: Symptoms and Signs

What is Prostate Cancer?

Prostate cancer only affects men because it occurs in the prostate, a small gland located below the bladder that produces the male seminal fluid to nourish and transport sperm.

What Are The Symptoms of Prostate Cancer?

Some cases of prostate cancer are silent. However, there are signs that might indicate the condition:

  • Urinary and Other Problems:
  • difficulty starting or maintaining a steady stream of urine
  • frequent urination and leakage of urine
  • excessive nighttime urination urge
  • leaking small amounts of urine
  • weak urination stream or straining to empty the bladder
  • blood in the urine or seminal fluid
  • onset of erectile dysfunction
  • discomfort when sitting

Risk factors

Factors that may increase your risk of prostate cancer include:

  • Age
  • Family history
  • Race
  • Obesity

Prostate cancer is one of the most common types of cancer affecting men. When detected early and still contained to the prostate gland, it usually grows slowly. When initially confined to the prostate gland, it may not cause major harm. Prostate cancer that has been detected early has a better chance of successful treatment.

Treatment and Diagnosis

If you or your loved one is experiencing the signs or potential risk factors, it is best to make an appointment with a urologist. The urologist can take a biopsy, which is the only sure way to know if you have cancer. Additional steps that your doctor may employ include:

  • A PSA test
  • A DRE (this is a manual exam)
  • Biomarker tests

Like any cancer, early detection and intervention are key to resolving it. If not caught and treated early, the cancer can metastasize or spread.

Untreated, prostate cancer can spread to nearby organs such as the bladder, or to the bones or other organs, through your bloodstream or lymphatic system. If prostate cancer reaches the bones, it can cause pain and broken bones. As prostate cancer advances, it can be treated and somewhat controlled but it is unlikely to be cured at a later stage.

Prostate Cancer Prevention

Doctors recommend the following changes to prevent prostate cancer. These recommendations are healthy lifestyle changes for all individuals:

  • Choose a healthy diet full of fruits, vegetables and whole-grain foods.
  • Avoid high-fat foods.
  • Exercise at least 3 to 4 times a week.
  • Maintain a weight that is healthy for your body mass.

Men who face a higher risk of prostate cancer may consider medications or other treatments. Your urologist may prescribe 5-alpha reductase inhibitors. Not only do these drugs reduce the overall risk of developing prostate cancer through controlling prostate gland enlargement, they also may reduce hair loss.

Many men would rather avoid prostate exams and knowing if they have prostate cancer. They may fear that if cancer is detected they will experience impotency or incontinence because of treatment. However, recent medical developments have made such concerns unnecessary. To learn more about prostate problems, visit the St Pete Urology website or make an appointment for a consultation.

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St Pete Urology is a team of medical professionals who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of urological diseases and conditions. We offer quality care with compassion. For an appointment, call us at (727) 478-1172