Having a prostate exam probably isn’t how most men prefer to spend an afternoon, but what if that exam is the difference between life and death? Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men in the U.S.; this year, almost 162,000 men will be diagnosed with the disease, and almost 28,000 more will die from it. About one in every seven men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer at some point in their lifetime.
Statistics show that the five-year survival rate for most men with prostate cancer is 99%, but only if it’s detected and treated in its early stages. For those with prostate cancer that has spread to other parts of the body, the survival rate drops to 28%. Although the reason isn’t known, the risk of prostate cancer is 70% higher in African American men than in white men. Regular screening and early detection of prostate cancer is extremely important to be able to survive the disease.
Symptoms of prostate cancer aren’t always apparent. Routine screenings are extremely important; men age 50 or higher should be tested annually, as should men with any risk factors or a family history of prostate cancer.
Signs to watch for include burning or pain when urinating, loss of bladder control, difficulty urinating, or decreased flow of the urine stream. You should also get tested if you have blood in the semen, painful ejaculations, or swelling in the legs or pelvic area, or if you experience numbness or pain in the hips, legs, or feet.
September is National Prostate Health Month and National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month. Men, now is the time to take charge of your prostate health! Women should strongly encourage their husbands, sons, fathers, and brothers to get tested for prostate cancer.
Advanced Urology Associates
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