The Top 7 Signs Of Advanced Prostate Cancer
In the early stages, you may not notice any symptoms related to prostate cancer. This is why screenings are important. Symptoms can sometimes be noticed for the first time when the cancer advances.
Advanced prostate cancer, also called metastatic cancer, means the cancer has spread to other areas of your body beyond your prostate gland. The most common areas for prostate cancer to spread are your bladder, rectum, and bones. It can also spread to your lymph nodes, liver, lungs, and other body tissues.
Whether youve just been diagnosed or youre in treatment, its also important to know the signs of advanced cancer. Cancer can behave differently depending on your genetics, so not every person will experience the same symptoms in the same way.
Read on to learn more about the seven top symptoms of advanced prostate cancer and how to spot them.
What Are The Risks Of Prostate Cancer In Elderly Men
This study demonstrated that men with prostate biopsy specimens showing Gleason score 2 to 4 disease faced a minimal risk of death from prostate cancer within 15 years from diagnosis. Most elderly men showing Gleason grade 2 to 4 died from competing medical hazards other than prostate cancer during the observation time.
Other Locations Of Pain From Prostate Cancer
Pain during urination
Leg and foot pain from swelling/edema
Shooting, burning or stabbing pain can occur in the lower extremities if a metastasis is pressing against a nerve.
Lower abdominal pain or soreness can occur if a tumor is causing pressure on the organs that surround the prostate.
If youve been having any of the following symptoms, many benign conditions can explain them. But so can prostate cancer. Better safe than sorry.
Get yourself checked out if youve been experiencing any of the following:
Urination discomfort of any sort
Any difficulty with urination
Increased urges to urinate overnight
Loss of bladder control
Reduced flow of urine stream
Appearance of blood in the urine
Blood in semen
Numbness in the lower extremities
Unexplained fatigue or weight loss
WARNING: Many of the aforementioned symptoms are signs of advanced disease.
The time to get checked is at the first sign of symptoms, even if they seem trite such as reduced urine stream or having more urges to urinate overnight.
Furthermore, annual PSA tests are highly recommended beginning at age 50 for men at average risk of prostate cancer.
For more information on prostate cancer screening, call Cancer Center Treatments of America at 993-3381.
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Are Prostate Problems Always A Sign Of Prostate Cancer
Not all growths in the prostate are cancerous, and not all prostate problems indicate cancer. Other conditions that cause similar prostate cancer symptoms include:
- Benign prostatic hyperplasia : At some point, almost every man will develop benign prostatic hyperplasia . This condition enlarges the prostate gland but doesnt increase cancer risk. The swollen gland squeezes the urethra and blocks the flow of semen and urine. Medications, and sometimes surgery, can help.
- Prostatitis: Men younger than 50 are more prone to prostatitis, inflammation and swelling of the prostate gland. Bacterial infections are often the cause. Treatments include antibiotics or other medications.
Identification Of Candidates For Observation
Prostate cancer is in most cases a slowly progressive disease. However, early localized disease is curable whereas metastatic disease is not. Thus, a continued debate among clinicians is whether to treat early to prevent disseminated disease, or observe and delay treatment until there is evidence of progression. The former risks harm from overtreatment of an indolent disease whereas the latter risks missing an opportunity for cure among those destined to experience progression. An unmet need is to identify the relatively small proportion of men with a lethal phenotype in whom death can be prevented by curative intervention, while avoiding treatment of the large pool of indolent disease that can be detected with screening.
Selection of patients for active surveillance depends upon patient and tumor metrics, as well as a patient’s personal preferences. The age, comorbidities, and estimated life expectancy of the patient are important to consider given that prostate cancer can be a slowly progressive disease that may not have time to progress in those whose remaining years of life are limited. In this respect, tools for estimating life expectancy can be useful in decision making.
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Can Prostate Cancer Treatment Affect Your Quality Of Life
Your age and overall health will make a difference in how treatment may affect your quality of life. Any health problems you have before youre treated, especially urinary, bowel or sexual function problems, will affect how you recover. Both surgery and radiation can cause urinary incontinence or impotence .
History Of Prostate Cancer In The Era Of Prostate
based screening for prostate cancer led to earlier detection of prostate cancer , and thus altered the course of the disease in the absence of treatment . Identifying the incidence and prevalence of prostate cancer increased with widespread prostate-specific antigen testing, as did the length of time that men live with their disease, as compared to the pre prostate-specific antigen era. The stage migration that occurred, with application of curative intervention at an earlier stage, undoubtedly led to a reduction inprostate cancer mortality. However, the extent to which this reduction was due to prostate-specific antigen based screening is debatable. Further, because prostate cancer progresses slowly and is found most often in older men with competing risks of mortality, the extent to which these changes in natural history have resulted in benefit and harm are also debatable.
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Prostate Cancer How Is It Diagnosed
After obtaining a thorough history, a veterinarian willperform a complete physical examination including a rectal examination. In mostpatients, rectal examination reveals an irregularly enlarged, non-painfulenlarged prostate . In some large and giant breeds, theprostate gland is not palpable via rectal examination.
A veterinarian will recommend some non-invasive blood andurine tests, as well as diagnostic imaging studies, including:
- Complete blood count to evaluate white bloodcells, red blood cells, and platelets
- Biochemical profile to check electrolytes , as well as liver and kidney values
- Urinalysis to screen for evidence ofinflammation & infection, as well as help evaluate kidney function
- Urine culture to definitively screen for aurinary tract infection
- Diagnostic imaging
If diagnostic imaging confirms prostatomegaly, a prostatesampling procedure will be recommended. Methods for sampling cells from theprostate gland are:
- Cytology cells may be obtained from theprostate either via aspiration or a minimally invasive procedure called aprostatic wash
- Biopsy a surgical procedure to obtain a chunkof tissue for evaluation more invasive than an aspiration or prostatic wash
Pet parents will likely find it helpful to partner with aboard-certified veterinary internal medicine specialist to develop a logicaland cost-effective diagnostic plan.
What Is The Prostate
The prostate is a gland. It is usually the size and shape of a walnut and grows bigger as you get older. It sits underneath the bladder and surrounds the urethra, which is the tube that carries urine out of the body. The prostate’s main job is to help make semen the fluid that carries sperm.
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Risk Factors For Prostate Cancer
Some risk factors have been linked to prostate cancer. A risk factor is something that can raise your chance of developing a disease. Having one or more risk factors doesn’t mean that you will get prostate cancer. It just means that your risk of the disease is greater.
- Age. Men who are 50 or older have a higher risk of prostate cancer.
- Race. African-American men have the highest risk of prostate cancerâthe disease tends to start at younger ages and grows faster than in men of other races. After African-American men, prostate cancer is most common among white men, followed by Hispanic and Native American men. Asian-American men have the lowest rates of prostate cancer.
- Family history. Men whose fathers or brothers have had prostate cancer have a 2 to 3 times higher risk of prostate cancer than men who do not have a family history of the disease. A man who has 3 immediate family members with prostate cancer has about 10 times the risk of a man who does not have a family history of prostate cancer. The younger a man’s relatives are when they have prostate cancer, the greater his risk for developing the disease. Prostate cancer risk also appears to be slightly higher for men from families with a history of breast cancer.
- Diet. The risk of prostate cancer may be higher for men who eat high-fat diets.
Sex And The Prostate: Overcoming Erectile Dysfunction When You Have Prostate Disease
If you are concerned about erectile function, its important to understand what erectile dysfunction really is. Failing to have an erection one night after youve had several drinks or even for a week or more during a time of intense emotional stress is not erectile dysfunction. Nor is the inability to have another erection soon after an orgasm. Nearly every man occasionally has trouble getting an erection, and most partners understand that.
Erectile dysfunction is the inability to attain and maintain an erection sufficient for sexual intercourse at least 25% of the time. The penis doesnt get hard enough, or it gets hard but softens too soon. The problem often develops gradually. One night it may take longer or require more stimulation to get an erection. On another occasion, the erection may not be as firm as usual, or it may end before orgasm. When such difficulties occur regularly, its time to talk to your doctor.
Erectile dysfunction can have many causes, including some forms of prostate disease and medications and surgery for prostate cancer. Fortunately, in many cases, this problem can often be effectively addressed. Some men find relief by taking medications to treat erectile dysfunction. If these arent effective for you, a number of other options, including injections and vacuum devices, are available. The possibility of finding the right solution is now greater than ever.
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The Basics: How An Erection Occurs
At its most basic level, an erection is a matter of hydraulics. Blood fills the penis, causing it to swell and become firm. But getting to that stage requires extraordinary orchestration of body mechanisms. Blood vessels, nerves, hormones, and, of course, the psyche must work together. Problems with any one of these elements can diminish the quality of an erection or prevent it from happening altogether.
Nerves talk to each other by releasing nitric oxide and other chemical messengers. These messengers boost the production of other important chemicals, including cyclic guanosine monophosphate, prostaglandins, and vasoactive intestinal polypeptide. These chemicals initiate the erection by relaxing the smooth muscle cells lining the tiny arteries that lead to the corpora cavernosa, a pair of flexible cylinders that run the length of the penis .
Figure 1: Anatomy of the penis
The penis is made up of three cylindrical bodies, the corpus spongiosum which contains the urethra and includes the glans of the penisand two corpora cavernosa , that extend from within the body out to the end of the penis to support erection. Blood enters the corpora cavernosa through the central arteries.
What Is A Grade Group
In 2014, the International Society of Urological Pathology released supplementary guidance and a revised prostate cancer grading system, called the Grade Groups.
The Grade Group system is simpler, with just five grades, 1 through 5.
*Risk Groups are defined by the Grade Group of the cancer and other measures, including PSA, clinical tumor stage , PSA density, and number of positive biopsy cores.
Many hospitals report both the Gleason score and the Grade Group, but there may be hospitals that still report only the old Gleason system.
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Soreness In The Groin
When prostate cancer spreads, its common for cancer cells to go to your lymph nodes and then move to more areas of your body. The lymph nodes are a network of glands that help your body filter fluids and fight infections.
There are several lymph nodes in your groin. These are the ones closest to your prostate, so its common for the cancer to spread to them first. Cancer cells prevent your lymph nodes from draining fluid and working properly. When this happens, your lymph nodes swell. As a result, you might experience pain or soreness in the area.
Is It Common For Older Men To Have Prostate Cancer
In fact, more than 70 percent of men over the age of 80 have some quantity of cancer cells in their prostate. Its so common that it sometimes doesnt go diagnosed until autopsies are performed, though that doesnt mean the cancer is the cause of death.
When you reach age 40, talk to your doctor about your familys medical history and other key factors that will help determine your risk of developing the disease. If you get tested, youll likely undergo a digital rectal exam and a PSA test, a blood -draw that measures your levels of prostate specific antigen .
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Rectal Exams And Blood Test
Prostate specific antigen, or PSA, is a blood test that looks for a protein made by the prostate and prostate cancer cells. When this test is used to screen healthy men between the ages of 5569 years old, it can decrease prostate cancer death by about 20%. Your doctor will draw blood and pair it with a digital rectal exam for initial screening.
External Beam Radiation Therapy
The following three sections refer to treatment using x-rays.
Conventional external beam radiation therapy
Historically conventional external beam radiation therapy was delivered via two-dimensional beams using kilovoltage therapy x-ray units, medical linear accelerators that generate high-energy x-rays, or with machines that were similar to a linear accelerator in appearance, but used a sealed radioactive source like the one shown above. 2DXRT mainly consists of a single beam of radiation delivered to the patient from several directions: often front or back, and both sides.
Conventional refers to the way the treatment is planned or simulated on a specially calibrated diagnostic x-ray machine known as a simulator because it recreates the linear accelerator actions , and to the usually well-established arrangements of the radiation beams to achieve a desired plan. The aim of simulation is to accurately target or localize the volume which is to be treated. This technique is well established and is generally quick and reliable. The worry is that some high-dose treatments may be limited by the radiation toxicity capacity of healthy tissues which lie close to the target tumor volume.
Intensity-modulated radiation therapy
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Risks Of Over Treatment Of Prostate Cancer
Over diagnosis is the detection of a cancer that would otherwise not have been diagnosed in the lifetime of the host if the detection test had not been performed. Treatment of men who would otherwise not have known about their cancer in the absence of PSA testing and biopsy are over treated. Over treatment exacts a cost to the health care system and potential harm to a patient , with no benefit. Over treatment is most likely to occur when a low grade is detected, especially in an older man. Data from various sources suggest that in the PSA range where many men are undergoing prostate biopsy today , 15-25% will have prostate cancer detected, and 80-90% will be low grade.
The rate of in the U.S. is similar to the rate of over diagnosis since the majority of men undergo curative intervention after receiving a prostate cancer diagnosis. A range of estimates of over diagnosis between 23% and 42% have been reported based on U.S. incidence. Depending upon the age at diagnosis, and the disease characteristics, the likelihood that a screen detected cancer has been over diagnosed can vary from below 5% to more than 75%.
For Starters Lets Talk About What The Prostate Is And What It Does
What is the prostate? The prostate is an important organ in the male reproductive system. The prostate is positioned just below the bladder.
What does the prostate do? The prostate plays a role in the production and emission of semen. In young men, the prostate is about the size of a walnut. As men age, the prostate usually grows larger.
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Psa Screening For Prostate Cancer: A Controversial History
The history of the role of the prostate-specific antigen test for prostate cancer is controversial.
The prostate-specific antigen blood test was created in the late 1980s, and tests for elevated levels of the antigen. Elevated levels can be suggestive of prostate cancer. The test itself is insufficient for diagnosing prostate cancer and was initially proposed as a marker of prostate cancer recurrence or disease progression. But doctors quickly began using it for cancer screening throughout the United States. By 1992, PSA testing as a cancer screen was at its peak.
Also, in the late 1980s, surgeons in the United States and Europe perfected the technique of radical prostatectomy, which involves removal of the prostate gland and any cancer within it. Initially, it seemed like an ideal situation: Men could have a simple blood test and prostate cancers that had not spread outside of the prostate gland could be cured.
But as time wore on, problems emerged that had not been anticipated when PSA screening was introduced: