6 important facts about prostate cancer

The prostate is a gland below the male bladder that produces semen. Prostate cancer occurs when cells in this gland begin to divide uncontrollably and eventually spread to surrounding tissues, lymph nodes, skeletal bones, and other areas of the body.

1. Factors

The disease develops mainly in men over 50 years of age. Age is the most key factor – the risk increases with age.

In men aged 90, the risk of prostate tumor is thought to be about 90 percent. In addition to age, family burden and high fat content in food are considered to be risk factors.

The risk of this type of cancer also increases under the influence of smoking, radiation and industrial radiation. It is known that for people of the Asian race, the risk is about two to two and a half times lower to get sick with this type of tumor.

2. What causes prostate cancer

What causes prostate cancer? As with other types of malignant tumors, in this type of disease, the reasons that cause normal cells to become cancerous are not entirely clear. Because these cells are of glandular origin, prostate cancer is called adenocarcinoma.

One of the theories to which the greatest importance is attached is the hormonal one. With her, it is believed that prostate cancer develops, thanks to male sex hormones. The theory is also confirmed by the fact that successful treatment of prostate cancer is done with hormonal drugs.

Chronic infections of the prostate gland, as well as Herpes Virus Type 2 and CMV are also related to the disease.

3. What are the symptoms of a prostate tumor?

Prostate cancer initially occurs without any symptoms. Tumor cells develop in the periphery of the adeno gland, so signs in the lower urinary tract do not appear until the tumor has grown a lot.

Symptoms of advanced prostate cancer include difficulty urinating due to a blockage in the channel through which urine passes, back pain due to the cancer cells spreading to the bones, weakness or swelling of the lower limbs, as the cancer cells also affect the lymphatic channels.

4. How common is the disease

Prostate cancer is one of the most common malignancies in men. According to statistics from the Singapore Cancer Registry, from 2009 to 2013, 3,456 men were diagnosed with prostate cancer.

This makes it the third most common cancer in men in Singapore and the fifth leading cause of cancer deaths.

5. How to detect prostate cancer early

For early diagnosis, it is important that men in the risk group have annual preventive examinations with a urologist. If prostate cancer is detected early, the prognosis is significantly better.

The prognosis for the disease is determined by how closely the tumor cells resemble normal ones. The more different they are, the more aggressive the carcinoma is, and the prognosis for treatment is poor. One of the key ways to monitor for cancer symptoms is with a prostate specific antigen (PSA) test.

However, this test has come under controversy in recent years because it is believed that it may lead to misdiagnosis and mistreatment. A high PSA level suggests the presence of prostate cancer, but the test does not take into account whether the high values ​​are not caused by other reasons.

6. What is the treatment

Treatment for prostate cancer involves surgery to remove the prostate and adjacent seminal vesicles. An alternative to prostatectomy is radiation therapy.

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