Psa Testing: One Step At A Time
The PSA test is a diagnostic beginning, not an end. Its biggest limitation is that it is not cancer-specific. I have heard it best explained as a smoke alarm that can alert us to potential problems in the prostate, but it cannot distinguish between a full-blown fire fueled by cancer or one of several other medical conditions, such as an enlarged prostate or prostatitis, that can be creating smoke. This data, combined with the DRE that provides a tactile assessment for the presence of tumor growth, gives physicians information that may lead them to recommend a needle biopsy to determine if cancer cells are present in the prostate.
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Your Thoughts And Feelings
Changes to your body and your sex life can have a big impact on you. You may feel worried, unsatisfied, angry and some men say they feel like they’ve lost a part of themselves. There are ways to tackle these issues and find solutions that work for you.
If you are stressed or down about changes to your sex life, finding some support may improve how you feel. There are lots of different ways to get support.
You are not alone. A lot of men, with and without prostate cancer have sexual problems. Talking to other men who have had similar experiences can help.
- Our sexual support service is a chance for you, or your partner, to talk to one of our Specialist Nurses with an interest in helping with sexual problems.
- Our one-to-one support service is a chance to speak to someone who’s been there. They can share their experiences and listen to yours.
- Our online community is a place to deal with prostate cancer together. You can talk about whatever’s on your mind. Anyone can ask a question or share an experience.
- Our Specialist Nurses can answer questions and explain your treatment options. You can also email or chat online with our nurses.
- Get in touch with your local prostate cancer support group.
Counsellors are trained to listen and can help you find your own ways to deal with things. Many hospitals have counsellors or psychologists who specialise in helping people with cancer – ask your doctor or nurse if this is available.
Tips For Talking With Your Partner
- Bring your partner with you to doctors visits. Being part of the conversation may help them understand what youre experiencing.
- Listen to your partners concerns, too. Remember that this issue affects both of you.
- See a therapist or a sex therapist to help you work out any issues that are affecting your sex life.
- If sex is a problem right now, its possible to fulfill each other sexually in other ways. Cuddling, kissing, and caressing can also be pleasurable.
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Avoiding Risks During Cancer Treatment
Talk with your doctor about how to protect yourself and your partner from any risks from your cancer treatment. For example, such protections may include using a condom to protect your partner from being exposed to chemotherapy. These drugs stay in your semen for 48 to 72 hours. Also, use a condom if you had brachytherapy. The condom protects your partner if a radiation seed comes out.
You are less likely to make a partner pregnant when you are receiving chemotherapy. But it is still possible. Protect your partner and any future children by avoiding pregnancy until at least 2 months after finishing chemotherapy.
Chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and some types of surgery can take away your ability to make a woman pregnant. The medical name for this is infertility. Be sure to let your oncologist know before cancer treatment starts if you are concerned about infertility. You might want to freeze some of your sperm or try another fertility-preserving option. Learn more about fertility and cancer.
Other Cancer Treatment Effects On Ejaculation
Some cancer treatments reduce the amount of semen thats produced. After radiation to the prostate, some men ejaculate less semen. Toward the end of radiation treatments, men often feel a sharp pain as they ejaculate. The pain is caused by irritation in the urethra . It should go away over time after treatment ends.
In most cases, men who have hormone therapy for prostate cancer also make less semen than before.
Chemotherapy and other drugs used to treat cancer very rarely affects ejaculation. But there are some drugs that may cause retrograde ejaculation by damaging the nerves that control emission.
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About Dr Dan Sperling
Dan Sperling, MD, DABR, is a board certified radiologist who is globally recognized as a leader in multiparametric MRI for the detection and diagnosis of a range of disease conditions. As Medical Director of the Sperling Prostate Center, Sperling Medical Group and Sperling Neurosurgery Associates, he and his team are on the leading edge of significant change in medical practice. He is the co-author of the new patient book Redefining Prostate Cancer, and is a contributing author on over 25 published studies. For more information, contact the Sperling Prostate Center.
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Sex After Prostate Cancer: Treatment Choice Matters
Sexual function is one of the first thingsmany men think about if theyre diagnosed with prostate cancer. However, itsrarely the first, second, or even third thing they discuss with their partnersand doctor. Occasionally, a patient will ask me about it, but many men getembarrassed and wait until their doctor brings it up often when their partneris in a separate room.
Sex is a natural part of life for people intheir 60s and 70s and increasingly has remained so with improved lifeexpectancy and focus on active living. Men and their partners should beconcerned about sexual function, or potency, after prostate cancer treatment. Changesin sexual health are a huge factor in quality of life after prostate cancer andshould be considered when weighing your options.
In fact, its so important that my colleaguesand I are leading the charge on a multicenter randomized clinical trial solely focusedon preserving sexual potency after radiation therapy for prostate cancer. TheProstate Oncologic Therapy While Ensuring Neurovascular Conservation clinical trial involves stereotactic ablative radiotherapy, or SAbR, and anovel technique that we are hopeful will reduce patients risk for erectiledysfunction and other sexual side effects.
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Getting Treatment And Support
Speak to your GP or doctor or nurse at the hospital.
Talking about sex
It can be difficult talking about sex, but talking to your doctor, nurse or other health professional will mean you can get treatment and support. It can also help you feel more positive and more in control.
You can ask about sexual problems at any stage – before, during or after your prostate cancer treatment. Talking about it before your treatment will mean you know what to expect and can help you to prepare to start treatments for sexual problems soon afterwards.
Your team should ask you about your erections and sex life during your treatment for prostate cancer. But if they don’t then you may need to bring it up yourself.
Not everyone is used to talking about sex. You might need to bring it up more than once, or with a different person in your team. You can also ask to be referred to an expert in sexual problems or an ED clinic – they will be used to talking about sexual problems.
Our sexual support service
Our sexual support service is a chance for you, or your partner, to talk to one of our Specialist Nurses with an interest in helping with sexual problems after treatment for prostate cancer. They can talk to you in depth about the impact of treatment on your sex life and relationships, and discuss possible treatments or ways to deal with these changes.
What Is Prostate Cancer
most common cancer in men in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention .
Prostate cancer occurs when cells in the gland divide uncontrollably. This leads to a lump, or tumor, that draws nutrients and blood away from other vital functions in the area.
Acinar adenocarcinomas, or slow-growing tumors, are the most common type of prostate cancer
Thousands of men die in the U.S. every year from prostate cancer, but the CDC highlights that most men who have prostate cancer are over 65 years of age and usually die from a
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Prostate Cancer Linked To Sexually Transmitted Disease
- Story Highlights
- Study: Men with trichomonas vaginalis more likely to have aggressive prostate cancer
- The germ is a type of parasite that can infect the prostate
- Trichomonas affects 174 million people around the world each year
Men with prostate cancer who were previously infected with the sexually transmitted germ Trichomonas vaginalis are more likely to have an aggressive form of the cancer, compared with men who never had the STD, a new study says.
Researchers say trichomonas, an STD, is most common in men ages 25 to 39.
The germ, a type of parasite, can infect the prostate and may cause inflammation that spurs the growth of prostate cancer later in life, says senior author Lorelei Mucci, Ph.D., an assistant professor of epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health.
âOur underlying hypothesis is around inflammation and, in particular, we believe that inflammation from a variety of sources is leading to prostate cancer progression,âshe says.
In the study, Mucci and colleagues compared 673 prostate cancer patients to 673 men without prostate cancer, and tested their blood for signs of a past infection with trichomonas. All the men were enrolled in the Physicianâs Health Study, according to the report published this week in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.
Sex When You’re Single
Being sexually active and feeling attractive can be just as important if you are a single man. All the treatments described here are available to you if you’re single – whether you want to be able to masturbate, have sex, or want to start a new relationship.
If you are starting a new relationship, sexual problems and other side effects like urinary or bowel problems could be a worry. Some men worry that having problems with erections will affect their chances of having a new relationship. Fear of rejection is natural, and everyone has their own worries, whether or not they’ve had cancer. If you’re single, you may want time to come to terms with any changes prostate cancer has caused before you start having sex or dating.
Try talking over your worries with someone you feel comfortable with, such as a friend. Counselling or sex therapy may also help if you would prefer to talk to someone you don’t know.
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Living As A Prostate Cancer Survivor
For most men with prostate cancer, treatment can remove or destroy the cancer. Completing treatment can be both stressful and exciting. You may be relieved to finish treatment, but find it hard not to worry about cancer growing or coming back. This is very common if youve had cancer.
For other men, the cancer may come back in other parts of the body or may never go away completely. These men may get hormone treatment or other therapies to help keep the cancer under control for as long as possible. Learning to live with cancer that does not go away can be difficult and very stressful.
Link Found Between Common Sexual Infection And Risk Of Aggressive Prostate Cancer
For immediate release: Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Boston, MAA new study from Harvard School of Public Health and Brigham and Womens Hospital researchers has found a strong association between the common sexually transmitted infection, Trichomonas vaginalis, and risk of advanced and lethal prostate cancer in men.
The study appears online on September 9, 2009, on the Journal of the National Cancer Institute website and will appear in a later print edition.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among men in western countries, and the second leading cause of cancer-specific mortality. Identifying modifiable risk factors for the lethal form of prostate cancer offers the greatest opportunity to reduce suffering from this disease, said Jennifer Stark, an HSPH researcher and lead author of the study.
One potential risk factor is inflammation, which appears to play an important role in the development and progression of prostate cancer, but the source of inflammation of the prostate is not clear. Trichomonasvaginalis, which infects an estimated 174 million people globally each year and is the most common non-viral sexually transmitted infection, can infect the prostate and could be a source of inflammation. With respect to prostate cancer prevention, it is noteworthy that up to three-quarters of men infected with Trichomonas vaginalis may not realize they are infected, since they may not have any symptoms.
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Are There Any Surgical Techniques That Have Been Developed To Improve Erectile Function Outcomes
At this time, there are several different surgical approaches to carry out the surgery, including retropubic or perineal approaches as well as laparoscopic procedures with freehand or robotic instrumentation. Much debate but no consensus exists about the advantages and disadvantages of the different approaches. Further study is needed before obtaining meaningful determinations of the success with different new approaches.
Before Radiation Therapy Chemotherapy Hormone Therapy Targeted Therapy Or Immunotherapy
If having radiation, chemo, hormone therapy, targeted therapy, or immunotherapy is in your treatment plan, here are some questions you might want to ask before it starts. Keep in mind not all of these questions are right for everyone. What questions you ask depend on your age, stage in life, relationship status, and the type of cancer and treatment youâre getting. If you forget or donât think about asking questions before treatment, itâs a good idea to ask them as during your treatment visits or check-ups. Itâs also good to keep asking questions and following up on problems youâve brought up at past visits.
- How soon will treatment start?
- What side effects can I expect?
- How will this treatment affect my appearance?
- Will I lose my hair? If so, when and how much?
- Will I gain or lose weight?
- Can I exercise during treatment?
- How might treatment affect my sex life? Will it affect my sexual desire, response, or function? What can be done about these effects?
- Do I need to use birth control while Iâm getting treatment? For how long?
- Does my partner need to use birth control while Iâm getting treatment? What about afterward? For how long?
- Can my cancer, medication, or treatment be passed to my partner through my body fluids?
- What safety measures do I need to take, and for how long?
- Will I be able to have children after treatment?
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Can Anything Be Done For Erectile Dysfunction Caused By Prostate Cancer Treatment
- How good your erections were before your treatment
- Other medical conditions you have like high blood pressure or diabetes
- Some types of medicines you may take such as medicines for high blood pressure or antidepressants
- Things you do in your life such as drinking or smoking
- The type of prostate cancer treatment you had
It is important that you and your partner speak with your doctor or healthcare team about what you can do. Your doctor or healthcare team will speak with you about what might work best for you if you have erectile dysfunction. It is important that you speak with them since some treatments for erectile dysfunction can affect other medical problems you may have.
Types of treatment for erectile dysfunction include:
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Sexual Distress Depression After Prostate Cancer Treatment
May 20, 2020
Nearly one-third of men who have undergone treatment for prostate cancer report that a subsequent lack of sexual function has had the greatest impact on their quality of life, results from a new survey show.
“All the studies have been saying that sexual function is okay after treatment, but we know that’s not true,” said André Deschamps, MBA, who is chair of the European Prostate Cancer Coalition, known as Europa UOMO.
This issue has been neglected because people think older men aren’t interested in sex, Deschamps told Medscape Medical News.
“It makes me mad when people say a man in his 70s doesn’t have a sexual life.” That’s not the case, he said. “Our study shows you a real picture of quality of life after treatment. We know it is affected far more heavily than the medical world has been telling us.”
The EUPROMS survey looked at quality of life in 2943 men, from 24 European countries, who had undergone some treatment for prostate cancer. Deschamps will present results at the European Association of Urology 2020 Congress, which will be held online in July.
Men were eligible to complete the survey which was available in 19 languages if they were receiving or had received some form of treatment for prostate cancer, including active surveillance, surgery, external-beam radiation, prostate brachytherapy, chemotherapy, androgen-deprivation therapy, high-intensity focused ultrasound, and cryotherapy.
European Association of Urology 2020 Congress.
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Another type of prostate issue is chronic prostatitis, or chronic pelvic pain syndrome. This condition causes pain in the lower back and groin area, and may cause urinary retention. Symptoms include leaking and discomfort. In severe cases, a catheter may be required to relieve the symptoms. If the problem is unresponsive to other treatments, your doctor may suggest a surgical procedure. If these do not work, your symptoms could progress and become chronic.
An acute bacterial infection can cause a burning sensation. Inflammation of the prostate can affect the bladder and result in discomfort and other symptoms. This is the most common urinary tract problem in men under 50, and the third most common in men over 65. The symptoms of acute bacterial prostatitis are similar to those of CPPS. Patients may experience a fever or chills as a result of the infection.
A bacterial infection can also lead to prostate issues. Acute bacterial infections can be hard to treat. Some men with a bacterial infection may need to take antibiotics to prevent or treat symptoms. Symptoms of the disease include fever and chills, pain in the lower back and the tip of the penis. Some men may have blood in the urine, frequent urination, and blood in the urine. If you suffer from acute bacterial prostatitis, a medical professional should be able to prescribe you the appropriate treatments to prevent the disease.