Prostate Cancer Symptoms
by: Seth Miller
The prostrate is a walnut-sized gland found only in males. It surrounds the urethra near the neck of the bladder, in front of the rectum. It secretes seminal fluid to nourish the sperm, and ejects it during ejaculation. We know the prostrate less for its role in the reproductive system than for the problem it creates in the form of prostrate cancer. One in six American males gets prostrate cancer, and one in thirty-two dies of it. It is the second most fatal cancer after lung cancer. The onset of cancer starts as the person ages, and blacks are more prone to it than whites. It runs in the family, though no specific genes have been isolated. The peak incidence of cancer starts in the age group of 65-75.
Prostrate cancer progresses very slowly in most cases, and does not have any specific symptoms during its early stages. Most of the time it is detected during a simple medical inspection by a Digital Rectal Exam (DRE), which prompts further investigations to confirm cancer.
As the cancer progresses, the gland throttles the urethra, which causes the first symptoms. The frequency of urination increases and it is very weak. There is burning pain during urination, and some traces of blood can be seen. There is a sensation of inadequate emptying of the bladder. Impotence or painful ejaculations are other important symptoms. As stage three of the cancer starts, it spreads to the adjoining area. Prostrate cancer cells attack the bones as they advance. A deep bone pain in the legs, hip and backbone should alert the patient about the possibility of this disease. When it reaches stage four, the cancer cells are transported by the lymphatic system and bloodstream and create secondary tumors in the lymphatic nodes, called metastatic prostrate cancer.
Diagnosing prostrate cancer is done in stages. When DRE needs further investigation a Prostrate Specific Antigen (PSA) test is done, which indicates the possibility of cancer. A biopsy done using a number of samples from different areas of the prostrate should confirm the presence of cancer. The treatment options are radical prostatectomy, radiation therapy and hormone therapy. But, as most of the patients are old and the progress of the disease is slow, many men opt to wait, observe and seek only symptomatic relief.
Prostate Cancer Symptoms provides detailed information on Prostate Cancer, Prostate Cancer Symptoms, Prostate Cancer Treatments, Prostate Cancer Causes and more. Prostate Cancer Symptoms is affiliated with Prostate Health.
To find other free health content see e-healtharticles.com