This year 218,890 men in the U.S. will be diagnosed with prostate cancer, according to the American Cancer Society, in comparison to 178,480 new cases of breast cancer in women. It is the most frequently diagnosed cancer in men in the US. It is the second leading cancer after lung cancer in men.
If diagnosed early prostrate cancer can be treated successfully.
Prostate cancer forms in the tissues of the prostate, a gland the size of a walnut found in the male reproductive system. This cancer usually occurs in older men.
Age is the biggest risk factor, with men over 50 at a higher risk of being diagnosed with the disease. African-American men have a 60 percent higher incidence rate of prostate cancer than white men, while Asian men have lower incidences than whites. Family history plays a role as well, men with fathers or brothers who have had prostate cancer are more likely to get cancer themselves.
Men who eat a diet high in red meat also have a greater risk for prostate cancer. Their intake of fruits and vegetables is almost negligible. This could also be one of the reasons for the high risk.
Learning about personal risk for prostate cancer and options for early detection testing will help one make informed decisions about his prostate health.
• in its early stages, prostate cancer has no symptoms.
• a prostate-specific antigen test, along with a digital rectal exam, is the best way to detect anything abnormal. This applies primarily for men 50 and older or younger men at higher risk.
• Prostate cancer grows slowly over many years, and many cases are not life threatening. If diagnosed, there may not be a need to rush a treatment decision.
• there are many treatment options for prostate cancer.
• educating oneself is the key to making the right decision about his own health care.
The ACS recommends doctors offer a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test and digital rectal exam to men over 50 who do not have any major medical problem.
PSA is a substance that is made by the normal prostate gland. A small amount is found in the blood, usually at levels less than 4 nanograms per milliliter. If that level goes up to between 4 and 10 ng/mL, there is a 25 percent chance of having prostate cancer. If that level is over 10 ng/mL, the risk of prostate cancer doubles to 50 percent. It is also possible to have prostate cancer with levels under 4 ng/mL, which is why many doctors will recommend the rectal exam as well.
Prostrate cancer can be prevented by having a balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetable. Regular exercise is also beneficial in lowering the risks.
This year this year, Major League Baseball has teamed up with Prostate Cancer Foundation for the Home Run Challenge in honor of Father's Day. Each home run hit in 60 selected games from June 6 through Father's Day on June 17 will raise money for prostate cancer.