Prostate Cancer Care
Prostate Cancer Awareness Month offers the physicians at Comprehensive Cancer Centers the opportunity to raise awareness about the disease, while encouraging men to catch it early through regular screenings. According to the American Cancer Society, screening should begin at age 50 for men with average risk, but age 40 for men with high risk (family history).
One in nine men will get prostate cancer in their lifetimes. For African Americans, that number increases by 76 percent. Lifestyle factors, otherwise known as social determinants of health, play a huge role in health risks, health equity, and outcomes. While eating healthy and exercising can’t prevent someone from getting cancer, it can lower risks.
Whether you or someone you love had been affected by prostate cancer – or if you just want to learn the principles of a healthy lifestyle – September offers a great opportunity to get started. And to get started, it’s helpful to understand more about prostate cancer, its risks and guidelines for screenings.
What Are Risk Factors for Prostate Cancer?
Prostate cancer occurs in men when cancer cells develop in or around the prostate gland. While it’s the most diagnosed cancer in men in the United States, early detection has led to a decrease in death rates among men with prostate cancer. Unfortunately, after 20 years of significant decline, overall prostate cancer mortality trends have stabilized recently. These trends coincide with the decline in screening for the disease among men 50 years and older that occurred after the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force released their 2012 guidelines discouraging screening.
Signs and Symptoms of Prostate Cancer
Usually, the early stages of prostate cancer are asymptomatic, or without obvious symptoms. However, any of the symptoms listed below should be viewed as a potential warning sign requiring additional investigation.
- Trouble having or keeping an erection
- Blood in urine
- Pain in the spine, hips, ribs or other bones
- Weakness or numbness in the legs or feet
- Loss of bladder or bowel control
When Should Men Start to Get Tested for Prostate Cancer?
Prostate screenings should start at an age dependent on personal risk factors for developing cancer. When you visit your doctor, discuss family history of prostate cancer and other lifestyle habits that may affect chances of developing this disease. A general rule of thumb for when men should start pursuing a prostate cancer screening is starting at age 40. You may start screenings sooner, if your personal or family history leads your primary physician to see a benefit for early exams.
Should your primary physician detect any potential issues with prostate cancer, Comprehensive Cancer Centers will work closely with them to fully diagnose any potential occurrences and develop a treatment course of action, if necessary.
Clinic Research as a Prostate Cancer Option
Comprehensive Cancer Centers has developed a large and active prostate cancer research program. Comprehensive’s Dr. Nicholas Vogelzang completed extensive treatment and research on the disease, having participated in the early testing phases of a novel treatment all the way to the FDA approval of Provenge®.
Provenge® is designed to create an immune response against prostatic acid phosphatase, which is found in most prostate cancers, by mixing a person’s white blood cells with a bioengineered molecule. The Food and Drug Administration recently approved Radium 223, commercially known as Xofigo, designed as liquid radiation to attack cancer cells that have grown in patients’ bones.
While Dr. Vogelzang and the physicians, nurses and staff at Comprehensive are dedicated to bringing new treatments to standardized oncology, these protocols are still more effective when prostate cancer is detected as early as possible.
Comprehensive Cancer Centers Can Help
Physicians at Comprehensive Cancer Centers provide a variety of treatment options for prostate cancer including chemotherapy, radiation therapy and clinical research for the treatment of cancer. To schedule an appointment with the team at Comprehensive, please call 702-952-3350 or use the form on this page.
The content is 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.