Bladder And Urinary Troubles
A prostate tumor that has grown significantly in size may start to press on your bladder and urethra. The urethra is the passage the carries urine from your bladder out of your body. If the tumor is pressing on your urethra, you might have trouble passing urine.
One of the common areas for prostate cancer to spread to is the bladder, because the two organs are close. This can cause additional problems with urination and bladder function.
Some symptoms your bladder and urethra are being affected by cancer include:
- urinating more frequently
- getting up in the middle of the night to pee
- having blood in your urine or semen
- feeling like you have to urinate often and not actually passing anything
Its not as common, but prostate cancer can also spread to your bowel. The cancer first spreads to the rectum, which is the part of your bowel closest to the prostate gland.
Symptoms of cancer thats spread to the bowels include:
- stomach pain
Problems Emptying Your Bladder
If the cancer is pressing on your urethra or the opening of your bladder, you may find it difficult to empty your bladder fully. This can sometimes cause urine retention, where urine is left in your bladder when you urinate. There are several things that can help, including the following.
- Drugs called alpha-blockers. These relax the muscles around the opening of the bladder, making it easier to urinate.
- A catheter to drain urine from the bladder. This is a thin, flexible tube that is passed up your penis into your bladder, or through a small cut in your abdomen .
- An operation called a transurethral resection of the prostate to remove the parts of the prostate that are pressing on the urethra.
Hormone Therapy Side Effects
Testosterone is the primary male hormone, and plays an important role in establishing and maintaining typical male characteristics, such as body hair growth, muscle mass, sexual desire, and erectile function, and contributes to a host of other normal physiologic processes in the body. The primary systemic…
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Why Does Prostate Cancer Cause Hip Pelvis And Back Pain
Some men with prostate cancer dont realize the existence of the disease for many years until it gets worse and show some discomfort symptoms. The reason is due to this kind of cancer is more likely to grow very slowly, though in some cases it can grow rapidly and aggressively, too. Does it cause pain in the back, pelvis, and hip if so, when and why?
Understanding the symptoms of prostate cancer in general
As men get older, many of them experience a condition called prostate enlargement. Though it is a common condition, but the good news it is not cancerous tumor. But this enlargement can generate some similar symptoms to what happen in prostate cancer see more this issue in this section!
In general, the very early stage of prostate cancer doesnt lead to any signs and symptoms at all. Typically, the symptoms appear when the cancerous tumor has become large enough to cause pressure to the urethra .
*Picture credit to the Cancer Research UK
The pressure that hits the urethra can cause some problems in the way of how you pass the urine. Both cancerous and non-cancerous enlargement of prostate can press on the urethra, blocking the flow of urine. See in here for in-depth information about the symptoms of prostate cancer.
If the cancer does cause the symptoms, some of them may include:
What Are Male Sex Hormones
Androgens are required for normal growth and function of the prostate, a gland in the male reproductive system that helps make semen. Androgens are also necessary for prostate cancers to grow. Androgens promote the growth of both normal and cancerous prostate cells by binding to and activating the androgen receptor, a protein that is expressed in prostate cells . Once activated, the androgen receptor stimulates the expression of specific genes that cause prostate cells to grow .
Almost all testosterone is produced in the testicles a small amount is produced by the adrenal glands. Although prostate cells do not normally make testosterone, some prostate cancer cells acquire the ability to do so .
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Symptoms Of Advanced Prostate Cancer
The symptoms of advanced prostate cancer depend on where the cancer has spread to. Find out about the possible symptoms and when to see your doctor.
Advanced prostate cancer means that a cancer that began in the prostate gland has spread to another part of the body. If your cancer has spread you might:
- have bone pain
- have weight loss for no known reason
Money And Financial Support
If you have to reduce or stop work because of your prostate cancer, you may find it hard to cope financially.
If you have prostate cancer or are caring for someone who does, you may be entitled to financial support.
Find out early what help is available to you. Speak to the social worker at your hospital, who can give you the information you need.
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Your Gp Practice Nurse And District Nurse
Your GP, practice nurse, and district or community nurse will work with other health professionals to co-ordinate your care and offer you support and advice. They can also refer you to local services. They can visit you in your home and also help support your family. They might also care for you if you go into a nursing home or hospice.
How Doctors Find Metastatic Prostate Cancer
When you are diagnosed with prostate cancer, your doctor will order tests such as:
- MRI scans
- PET scans
These tests may focus on your skeleton and in your belly and pelvic areas. That way doctors can check for signs that the cancer has spread.
If you have symptoms such as bone pain and broken bones for no reason, your doctor may order a bone scan. It can show if you have signs of cancer spread in your bones.
Your doctor will also ask for blood tests, including a check of PSA levels, to look for other signs that the cancer is spreading.
PSA is a protein made by the prostate gland. A rise in PSA is one of the first signs your cancer may be growing. But PSA levels can also be high without there being cancer, such as if you have an enlarged prostate a prostate infection, trauma to the perineum, or sexual activity can also cause PSA level to be high.
If youve been treated, especially if a surgeon removed your prostate, your PSA levels should start to go down. Doctors usually wait seve,ral weeks after surgery before checking PSA levels. A rise in PSA after treatment may suggest the possibility cancer is back or spreading. In that case, your doctor may order the same tests used to diagnose the original cancer, including a CT scan, MRI, or bone scan. The radiotracer Axumin could be used along with a PET scan to help detect and localize any recurrent cancer.
Though very rare, its possible to have metastatic prostate cancer without a higher-than-normal PSA level.
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Treatment Options For Prostate Cancer
Your treatment options will depend on the stage of your cancer, medical history, and other factors. If you have low-grade prostate cancer, you might not need to undergo immediate treatment. Some people dont need treatment at all and just have to monitor their symptoms and attend regularly scheduled appointments to detect if the cancer is progressing. This is known as active surveillance and observation.
Surgery could be the right choice for you if the cancer is only located in the prostate gland. Two types of surgery include:
Retropubic surgery The surgeon makes one long incision in the abdomen to remove the prostate gland.
Robot-assisted laparoscopic prostatectomy The surgeon inserts a mechanical device through several small incisions in the abdomen. The instruments attached to the device remove the prostate gland. This is the more common technique used for most types of prostate cancer.
Other medical conditions you have
Your feelings about beginning treatment immediately
Your doctors opinion about beginning treatment immediately
Stage and grade of the cancer
Likelihood of curing or managing your cancer
Possible side effects
You dont have to decide what to do at your appointment. Although you might not be able to wait that long, you should give yourself at least some time to consider all your options and make the choice thats best for you. You might even be able to seek a second opinion.
What Is The Prognosis For People Who Have Prostate Cancer
Because prostate cancer tends to grow slowly, most men die from something other than the disease. Early detection is key to better outcomes. Almost all men 97% to 98% diagnosed with localized cancer that hasnt spread outside of the prostate live at least five years after diagnosis. When metastatic cancer has spread outside of the gland, one-third of men continue to survive after five years.
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What Are The Stages Of Prostate Cancer
Your healthcare provider uses the Gleason score and Grade Groups to stage prostate cancer based on its projected aggressiveness. To get this information, the pathologist:
- Assigns a grade to each type of cell in your sample. Cells are graded on a scale of three to five . Samples that test in the one to two range are considered normal tissue.
- Adds together the two most common grades to get your Gleason score .
- Uses the Gleason score to place you into a Grade Group ranging from one to five. A Gleason score of six puts you in Grade Group 1 . A score of nine or higher puts you in Grade Group five . Samples with a higher portion of more aggressive cells receive a higher Grade Group.
Risk Factors And Causes Of Prostate Cancer
Researchers are unsure of the exact causes of prostate cancer. They have found possible risk factors and how they could lead to the development of cancerous cells. When cancer forms in the prostate, its because of changes to the cells DNA. DNA makes up a persons genes and controls cells, deciding when they divide, grow, and die.
There have been studies of other possible risk factors with inconsistent results, such as:
There is ongoing research to determine the exact risk factors and causes of prostate cancer. If one or more of the factors above apply to you, theres a chance you might not develop the disease. Nothing has been proven yet. If youre worried about your risk of getting prostate cancer, you could consult with your doctor about making changes to your lifestyle.
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Prostate Cancer Risk Groups
In addition to stage, doctors may use other prognostic factors to help plan the best treatment and predict how successful treatment will be. Examples of these include the National Comprehensive Cancer Network risk group categories and the Cancer of the Prostate Risk Assessment risk score from University of California, San Francisco.
Information about the cancers stage and other prognostic factors will help the doctor recommend a specific treatment plan. The next section in this guide is Types of Treatment. Use the menu to choose a different section to read in this guide.
ON THIS PAGE: You will learn about the different types of treatments doctors use for people with prostate cancer. Use the menu to see other pages.
What Causes Prostate Cancer
Prostate cancer affects mainly older men. Six out of ten cases are diagnosed in men over 65, but less than 1% in men under 50. Though uncommon, prostate cancer can be seen in men even in their 30’s and 40’s. Men with a family history of prostate cancer are more likely to develop prostate cancer than the general population.
On a case-by-case basis, doctors cannot say with certainty what causes prostate cancer, but experts generally agree that diet contributes to the risk. Men who consume large amounts of fat — particularly from red meat and other sources of animal fat cooked at high heat — may be more likely to develop advanced prostate cancer. The disease is much more common in countries where meat and dairy products are dietary staples than in countries where the basic diet consists of rice, soybean products, and vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, cole slaw, or sauerkraut.
The underlying factor linking diet and prostate cancer is probably hormonal. Fats stimulate increased production of testosterone and other hormones, and testosterone acts to speed the growth of prostate cancer. High testosterone levels may stimulate dormant prostate cancer cells into activity. Some findings suggest that high testosterone levels also influence the initial onset of prostate cancer.
Welders, battery manufacturers, rubber workers, and workers frequently exposed to the metal cadmium seem to be abnormally vulnerable to prostate cancer.
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Screening Information For Prostate Cancer
Screening for prostate cancer is done to find evidence of cancer in otherwise healthy adults. Two tests are commonly used to screen for prostate cancer:
Digital rectal examination . A DRE is a test in which the doctor inserts a gloved, lubricated finger into the rectum and feels the surface of the prostate through the bowel wall for any irregularities.
PSA blood test. There is controversy about using the PSA test to look for prostate cancer in people with no symptoms of the disease. On the one hand, the PSA test is useful for detecting early-stage prostate cancer, especially in those with many risk factors, which helps some get the treatment they need before the cancer grows and spreads. On the other hand, PSA screening may find very-slow-growing prostate cancers that would never threaten someone’s life. As a result, screening for prostate cancer using PSA may lead to treatments that are not needed, which can cause side effects and seriously affect a person’s quality of life.
ASCO recommends that people with no symptoms of prostate cancer and who are expected to live less than 10 years do not receive PSA screening. For those expected to live longer than 10 years, ASCO recommends that they talk with their doctor to find out if the test is appropriate for them.
Other organizations have different recommendations for screening:
The symptoms and signs of prostate cancer may include:
Questions To Ask The Doctor
- What treatment do you think is best for me?
- Whats the goal of this treatment? Do you think it could cure the cancer?
- Will treatment include surgery? If so, who will do the surgery?
- What will the surgery be like?
- Will I need other types of treatment, too?
- Whats the goal of these treatments?
- What side effects could I have from these treatments?
- What can I do about side effects that I might have?
- Is there a clinical trial that might be right for me?
- What about special vitamins or diets that friends tell me about? How will I know if they are safe?
- How soon do I need to start treatment?
- What should I do to be ready for treatment?
- Is there anything I can do to help the treatment work better?
- Whats the next step?
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Risk Factors For Prostate And Testicular Disorders
While these men over 50 years old are at highest risk of developing prostate disorders and men between the ages of 20 and 54 are most at risk of developing testicular problems, age is just one of the factors that can increase a manâs risk of developing prostate and testicular disorders. Other risk factors include:
- Diet and weight â Eating a high-fat diet or being overweight or obese can increase mens testosterone levels, which in turn increases the risk of developing prostate and testicular health conditions.
- Ethnicity â African American men have a higher risk than men of other ethnicities of developing prostate disorders, and Caucasian males are most likely to develop testicular disorders.
- Family history â If a mans father or brother has suffered from a prostate or testicular disorder, he has a particularly high risk of developing the same condition.
- Testosterone levels â Men on testosterone therapy or who have naturally high levels of testosterone are more likely to develop prostate and testicular disorders.
- Other factors such as whether or not a man smokes, has contracted HIV or has undescended testicles contribute to his risk for developing testicular problems.
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Signs And Symptoms Of Testicular Cancer
Many of these symptoms are more likely to be caused by something other than testicular cancer. A number of non-cancerous conditions, such as testicle injury or inflammation, can cause symptoms a lot like those of testicular cancer. Inflammation of the testicle and inflammation of the epididymis can cause swelling and pain of the testicle. Both of these also can be caused by viral or bacterial infections.
Some men with testicular cancer have no symptoms at all, and their cancer is found during medical testing for other conditions. For instance, sometimes imaging tests done to find the cause of infertility can uncover a small testicular cancer.
But if you have any of these signs or symptoms, see your doctor right away.
If the cancer is small and localized, a doctor may recommend:
Watchful waiting or monitoring
The doctor may check PSA blood levels regularly but take no immediate action.
Prostate cancer grows slowly, and the risk of side effects may outweigh the need for immediate treatment.
A surgeon may carry out a prostatectomy. They can remove the prostate gland using either laparoscopic or open surgery.
Brachytherapy: A doctor will implant radioactive seeds into the prostate to deliver targeted radiation treatment.
Conformal radiation therapy: This targets a specific area, minimizing the risk to healthy tissue. Another type, called intensity modulated radiation therapy, uses beams with variable intensity.
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