What Will Happen After Treatment
Youll be glad when treatment is over. But its hard not to worry about cancer coming back. When cancer comes back it is called a recurrence. Even when cancer never comes back, people still worry about it. For years after treatment ends, you will see your cancer doctor. At first, your visits may be every few months. Then, the longer youre cancer-free, the less often the visits are needed.
Be sure to go to all follow-up visits. Your doctors will ask about your symptoms, examine you, and might order blood tests and maybe other tests to see if the cancer has come back.
Having cancer and dealing with treatment can be hard, but it can also be a time to look at your life in new ways. You might be thinking about how to improve your health. Call us at 1-800-227-2345 or talk to your doctor to find out what you can do to feel better.
You cant change the fact that you have cancer. What you can change is how you live the rest of your life,;making healthy choices and feeling as good as you can.
Choosing To Stop Treatment Or Choosing No Treatment At All
For some people, when treatments have been tried and are no longer controlling the cancer, it could be time to weigh the benefits and risks of continuing to try new treatments. Whether or not you continue treatment, there are still things you can do to help maintain or improve your quality of life.
Some people, especially if the cancer is advanced, might not want to be treated at all. There are many reasons you might decide not to get cancer treatment, but its important to talk to your doctors and you make that decision. Remember that even if you choose not to treat the cancer, you can still get;supportive care;to help with pain or other symptoms.
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How Else Can I Reduce My Risk For Cancer
The following may help reduce the risk of developing cancer:
- Choose a healthy diet to achieve and maintain a healthy weight. Eat more vegetables, fruits and whole grains and eat less red and processed meats. These actions may reduce the risk of developing many types of cancer as well as other diseases.
- Exercise regularly.
- Do not smoke. If you currently smoke, quit. Avoid exposure to second-hand smoke. For more information on quitting smoking, visit the NYS Smokerâs Quitline at www.nysmokefree.com or call 1-866-NY-QUITS.
- Discuss the risks and benefits of medical imaging, such as CT scans, with your health care provider to avoid unnecessary exposure to ionizing radiation. This is particularly important for children.
- Talk with your health care provider about recommended cancer screenings.
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Common Symptoms Associated With Prostate Cancer
Prostate cancer might not cause any symptoms, especially when its in the early stages. Some signs and symptoms are similar to other diseases and ailments, so you must speak with a doctor to determine your diagnosis.
Prostate cancer symptoms;in advanced stages include:
Blood in the semen or urine
Pain in the back, chest, hips, or other parts of the body where it spread to the bones
Difficulty urinating, including the urge to urinate more frequently or a weak or slow urinary stream
Numbness or weakness in the feet or legs
Loss of bowel or bladder control if the cancer is pressing against the spinal cord
If you notice any of the symptoms above, you should immediately make an appointment with a medical provider. Most of these symptoms can be the result of another ailment. For instance, non-cancerous growth of the prostate, known as benign prostatic hyperplasia , can cause trouble urinating. You might have a less serious condition thats causing your symptoms; however, you should see a specialist so they can perform tests and screen for prostate cancer.
Can Prostate Cancer Be Prevented
There are no clear prevention strategies for prostate cancer. There is some conflicting evidence that a healthy diet composed of low fat, high vegetables and fruits may help reduce your risk of prostate cancer. Routine screening, with PSA blood test and physical exam, is important to detect prostate cancer at an early stage. A healthy diet and regular exercise are also critical in maintaining good health and preventing disease in general.;
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Symptoms Of Prostate Cancer
Symptoms of prostate cancer do not usually appear until the prostate is large enough to affect the tube that carries urine from the bladder out of the penis .
When this happens, you may notice things like:
- an increased need to pee
- straining while you pee
- a feeling that your bladder has not fully emptied
These symptoms should not be ignored, but they do not mean you have prostate cancer.
It’s more likely they’re caused by something else, such as prostate enlargement.
Thousands Of Men With Prostate Cancer Get Risky Treatment They Dont Need New Approaches Could Curb That
The findings leave little doubt about the importance of informed decision making and the need for physician-patient discussions prior to deciding a course of action for early-stage prostate cancer, said Dr. Otis Brawley, chief medical officer for the American Cancer Society in Atlanta.
I think that this whole paper is a huge cry that we need to make sure that people are informed and are taking part in their treatment decisions, Brawley told MedPage Today.
The lower rate of regret among men on active surveillance might also reflect on the informed decision-making process, although the study did not specifically examine that issue, he added.
In the United States, its almost impossible to put someone on observation, after you have told them they have cancer, and not inform them, the way I think someone should be informed, said Brawley. Its very easy to tell someone you have cancer and were going to do a radical prostatectomy next Monday and not inform them. It may very well be that the people who got observation were more fully or better informed and better understood what they were facing, compared with the people who got aggressive therapy.
A study reported earlier this year reinforced the need for informed decision making based on physician-patient discussions about treatment options. The study showed high rates of regret among men who relied primarily on internet-based information about prostate cancer treatment to decide how their own disease should be treated.
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What Are Prostate Cancer Treatment Side Effects
Some prostate cancer treatments can affect the bladder, erectile nerves and sphincter muscle, which controls urination. Potential problems include:
- Incontinence: Some men experience urinary incontinence. You may leak urine when you cough or laugh, or you may feel an urgent need to use the bathroom even when your bladder isnt full. This problem can improve over the first six to 12 months without treatment.
- Erectile dysfunction : Surgery, radiation and other treatments can damage the erectile nerves and affect your ability to get or maintain an erection. Some men regain erectile function within a year or two . In the meantime, medications like sildenafil or tadalafil can help by increasing blood flow to the penis.
- Infertility: Treatments can affect your ability to produce or ejaculate sperm, resulting in male infertility. If you think you might want children in the future, you can preserve sperm in a sperm bank before you start treatments. After treatments, you may undergo sperm extraction. This procedure involves removing sperm directly from testicular tissue and implanting it into a womans uterus.
Impact Of Age On Treatment
The rising number of men diagnosed with prostate cancer is a result of increasing life expectancy as well as the current practice of screening by prostate-specific antigen blood tests. Besides PSA and Gleason score, age is considered a key prognostic factor in treatment decision making. Although organ-confined disease can be cured by radical prostatectomy and full-dose local radiation therapy, treatment options for advanced- stage disease remain palliative. They include active surveillance, or watchful waiting, early versus delayed hormonal therapy to control disease progression, and continuous or intermittent androgen deprivation. Observational studies of older men with early stage disease have suggested conservative management as a viable option.,
Chodak and associates evaluated 828 men who were managed expectantly in a series of nonrandomized trials. Median follow-up was approximately 6.5 years. Patients with poorly differentiated cancers had a 10-fold increased risk of death from prostate cancer as compared with men showing highly differentiated prostate cancer. A 5-year disease-specific survival of only 34% was found in men with poorly differentiated prostate cancer. In contrast a 5-year disease-specific survival of 87% was described in men with well-or moderately differentiated cancers.
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Am I At Risk Of Prostate Cancer
In the UK, about 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime. We donât know exactly what causes prostate cancer but there are some things that may mean you are more likely to get it these are called risk factors.
There are three main risk factors for getting prostate cancer, which are things you canât change. These are:;
If you have any of these risk factors or if you have any;symptoms, speak to your GP. They can talk to you about your risk, and about the;tests;that are used to diagnose prostate cancer. You can also get in touch with;our Specialist Nurses, who can help you understand your risk of prostate cancer.
Black Men And Their Doctors Should Be More Cautious About Active Surveillance
Active surveillance is an approach in which low-risk prostate cancer is not treated with surgery or radiation therapy. Instead, it is monitored very closely for any signs of change over months or years. Active surveillance is increasingly the treatment option of choice for low-risk prostate cancer. Many men embrace this approach because the side effects of treatment, usually surgery or radiation therapy, can be significant.
Black men, however, are more likely to develop more-aggressive prostate cancer. Because of that, Dr. Kantoff maintains that active surveillance may be less appropriate for many Black men. As with screening guidelines, there is little evidence to provide guidance one way or the other. Blacks have been underrepresented in active surveillance studies as well.
Having said that, I think some Black men could benefit from active surveillance, Dr. Kantoff says. This question needs to be studied more before we can come to firm recommendations.
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Risk Of Prostate Cancer
About 1 man in 8;will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime.
Prostate cancer is more likely to develop in older men and in non-Hispanic Black men. About 6 cases in 10 are diagnosed in men who are 65 or older, and it is rare in men under 40. The average age of men at diagnosis is about 66.
Screening For Prostate Cancer
There are no tests available with sufficient accuracy to screen populations of men for early signs of prostate cancer.;However, early detection and treatment can significantly improve prostate cancer survival.
The test most commonly used to aid early detection of prostate cancer is the prostate specific antigen blood test. This is not a diagnostic test as it can only indicate changes in the prostate. If you are concerned about prostate cancer you should talk to your doctor and make an informed choice about whether to have one of the tests designed to find early signs of prostate cancer, in view of the potential risks and benefits.
There are no proven measures to prevent prostate cancer.
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What A Psa Score Really Means For Your Prostate
The best way to know if you have prostate cancer at the earliest possible stage is not the PSA or the digital rectal exam. The best indication is a test called PSA velocity testing.
With PSA velocity testing, its possible to diagnose an early cancer even when the PSA and the rectal exam are normal.
PSA velocity describes how high the value of a mans PSA tests increase in one year. For example, if a you have a PSA test and its 0.5 higher than it was the year before, you have a PSA velocity score of 0.5. If the last time you had a PSA was five years ago, and this years test was 1.0 higher, then your PSA velocity is 0.2, or 1.0 divided by the five years.
As a man ages, due to the normal age-related increase in prostate size, his PSA is likely to rise ever so slightly. But as long as the PSA velocity is minimal, the odds are that if he has a latent cancer, his immune system is still keeping it in check. In fact, a PSA velocity of 0.03 or less per year has been shown to be accurate proof that no prostate cancer exists. Thats an optimal velocity. Although the values may vary slightly from year to year, there should not be any consistent overall increase greater than 0.03.
And all of this is true even if the highest PSA number is still in the normal range. So any PSA velocity greater than 0.15 should be a cause for immediate treatment.
Diagnosed With Prostate Cancer Four Big Mistakes Men Are Making
Its not the news you wanted to hear from your doctorYou have prostate cancer.
Fortunately, as with 97% of men diagnosed with this cancer, it hasnt spread to other parts of your body.
Even better news:;Your cancer is classified as low risk, which means your risk of dying from it over the next 15 years is less than 1%.
Now you have to decide what to do. Treatment such as surgery, hormones or radiation entails;side effect;risks such as erectile dysfunction and urinary incontinence. These days, in a big change in medical practice, more and more men who are newly diagnosed with low-risk prostate cancer have options that entail;not;seeking immediate treatment.
But heres the problem:;Many men make the;wrong;choices, according to a recent study. Heres what you need to know to make the right ones.
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Who Has A Prostate
The following people have a prostate:
- non-binary people who were assigned male at birth**
- some intersex people.***
* A trans woman is someone who was assigned male at birth but identifies as a woman. Trans women can develop prostate problems, even if they have taken hormones. The prostate is not removed during genital reconstructive surgery.** A non-binary person may not identify as a man or a woman.*** An intersex person may have both male and female sexual characteristics and so might have a prostate.
Trans, non-binary or intersex?
The information on this website has been developed based on guidance and evidence in men. If you are a trans woman, male-assigned non-binary or intersex, some of this information is still relevant to you but your experience may be slightly different. Find out more about;trans women and prostate cancer.
Causes And Risk Factors
The causes of prostate cancer are not fully understood, although it is believed that multiple factors can contribute to your overall risk, including your family background, ethnicity, diet, and environmental factors.
One out of nine men will develop prostate cancer during his lifetime. African American men are 60 percent more likely to develop prostate cancer, and twice as likely to die from prostate cancer, in comparison to Caucasian men.
A man with a father or brother diagnosed with prostate cancer has an increased chance of also being diagnosed with prostate cancer. Some experts suggest that men with a higher risk of developing the disease begin testing for it beginning at age 35, however no study has yet proven that lives are saved by testing at that age. The best advice is for men to make an informed decision.Men who served in the military during the Vietnam and Korean wars who were exposed to Agent Orange are at a higher risk for developing prostate cancer Sexual preferences and behavior are not risk factors for developing prostate cancer.
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What Types Of Hormone Therapy Are Used For Prostate Cancer
- reducing;androgen production by the testicles
- blocking the action of androgens throughout;the body
- block androgen production throughout the body
Treatments that reduce androgen production by the testicles are the most commonly used hormone therapies for prostate cancer;and the first type of hormone therapy that most men with prostate cancer receive. This form of hormone therapy includes:
Treatments that block the action of androgens in the body are typically used when ADT stops working. Such treatments include:
Treatments that block the production of androgens throughout the body include:
Differences In Tumor Location
Another possibility is that traditional biopsies may be more likely to miss areas of high-grade prostate cancer in African American men than in men of other racial/ethnic groups, leading to a higher likelihood of misdiagnosis of low-grade disease.
A 2014 study found that African American men are more likely than white men to have tumors in the anterior region of the prostate, which is harder to reach with a traditional transrectal biopsy, Dr. Parnes explained.
And at a follow-up biopsy or surgery, more African American men than men of other races are given a higher Gleason score than they were initially diagnosed withwhats called upgrading.
But advances in MRI technology have enhanced the ability to biopsy suspicious areas in the anterior prostate, reducing the chances that high-grade tumors in this part of the gland are missed.;
Image-guided biopsy, as well as another approach called transperineal biopsy, can pick up anterior lesions much better than a standard biopsy, Dr. Parnes noted. African American men should ask their doctor about these methods for improving detection of anterior lesions, he added.
However, image-guided biopsies are not the standard of care and access may be limited.
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