Movember Men’s Health

Movember has become a regular and anticipated part of November. Comprehensive Cancer Centers aims to encourage more men to take ownership of their health, in particular getting screenings for cancer.

Comprehensive understands that sometimes thinking about how to better take care of one’s personal health only comes into focus when dealing with an illness or a disease. The practice is very supportive of efforts like Movember, as raising awareness in fun ways leads people to want to take ownership of their personal health earlier and in more opportune times.”

For the team at Comprehensive Cancer Centers, November is raising awareness about men’s health issues focused on two cancers in men that are most treatable when discovered early. This includes prostate cancer and testicular cancer.

Prostate Cancer Screenings and Self-Management

The risk of developing prostate cancer, the second most common cancer for men, increases with age, but that doesn’t mean it’s a disease that only affects older men. Men who are African American, and men who have a strong family history are more likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer, regardless of the age.”

While 50 is considered a young age for men, that’s the time when men should be talking to their healthcare provider about Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) testing. For African American men, these discussions should start even earlier at age 45. Men with a strong family history should also begin discussions with their physicians at age 45.

PSA testing is a part of routine blood testing and is used to determine the measurement of PSA concentration in the blood. This is one of the fundamental tools doctors use when screening for prostate cancer.

November’s men’s health focus includes prostate cancer as it’s only men who have a prostate gland. The gland is usually the size and shape of a walnut and sits underneath the bladder and surrounds the urethra. The prostate grows bigger as men age, which is why men need to be proactive with screenings as they get older.

Prostate cancer occurs when certain cells in the prostate reproduce far more rapidly than normal, resulting in a tumor. Prostate cancer often grows slowly to start and may never cause any problems, but some men with riskier health profiles can see prostate cancer spread quickly.

Prostate cancer cells, if left untreated, can spread from the prostate and invade distant parts of the body, particularly the lymph nodes and bones, producing secondary tumors in a process known as metastasis. This makes early screening and detection potential lifesavers.

While blood screenings are the most accurate way to find prostate cancer early, there other way men can take charge of their health by being aware of early signs and symptoms. Discovery of symptoms warrant immediate follow up exams by their doctors. Common signs and symptoms include:

  • A need to urinate frequently, especially at night
  • Difficulty starting urination or holding back urine
  • Weak or interrupted flow of urine and painful or burning urination
  • Difficulty in having an erection and painful ejaculation
  • Blood in urine or semen
  • Frequent pain or stiffness in the lower back, hips, or upper thighs

Testicular Cancer Screenings and Self-Management

For testicular cancer, the disease starts as an abnormal growth or tumor that develops in one or both testicles. There are several types of testicular cancer, but the most common is the germ cell tumor.

Testicular cancer is another cancer that can be effectively treated if diagnosed and treated early, making it another health risk that men need to be aware of and help manage on their own.  Between self-exams and regular check-ups and screenings from your healthcare provider, men can catch this disease early and get it treated with successful outcomes.

To symbolize the importance of Movember, men often grow mustaches and beards. The symbol is to remind them how easy it can be to stop shaving for a while to grow a mustache, and how it takes even less effort to self-screen and make sure cancer screenings are included in annual check ups.

Comprehensive Cancer Centers Can Help

Physicians at Comprehensive Cancer Centers provide a variety of treatment options for prostate cancer and testicular cancer including chemotherapy, radiation therapy and world-class clinical research and immunotherapy. To schedule an appointment with the team at Comprehensive, please call 702-952-3350.

 

The content in this post is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.