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What Does Prostate Cancer Do

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Shapeshifting And The Spread Of Prostate Cancer

How Does Prostate Cancer Work?

There is a protein called AIM1 that, along with other proteins, acts likescaffolding that keeps a prostate cells walls sturdy.

AIM1, the scaffold, keeps normal cells in a rigid, orderly structure,explainsSrinivasan Vasan Yegnasubramanian, M.D., Ph.D., a member of the research team and associate professor at the JohnsHopkins University School of Medicine.

The researchers recently discovered that AIM1 is not present in almost 40%of metastatic prostate cancer cells. Without AIM1, cells become malleable,shapeshifting nomads that can migrate to other parts of the body,Yegnasubramanian says.

This shapeshifting sometimes allows prostate cancer cells to slip throughlayers of cells and tissues and slide into other organs. In fact, thescientists found that AIM1-lacking prostate cancer cells were capable ofinvading connective tissue-like materials at rates four times higher thancells with normal levels of AIM1.

Types Of Prostate Cancer

Almost all prostate cancers are adenocarcinomas. These cancers develop from the gland cells .

Other types of cancer that can start in the prostate include:

  • Small cell carcinomas
  • Neuroendocrine tumors
  • Transitional cell carcinomas
  • Sarcomas

These other types of prostate cancer are rare. If you are told you have prostate cancer, it is almost certain to be an adenocarcinoma.

Some prostate cancers grow and spread quickly, but most grow slowly. In fact, autopsy studies show that many older men who died of other causes also had prostate cancer that never affected them during their lives. In many cases, neither they nor their doctors even knew they had it.

Definitions Of Disease Categories

ICD codes used in the disease categories were the following : myocardial infarction , other coronary heart disease , cerebrovascular accident , arterial disease , heart failure , pneumonia , chronic lower respiratory disease , external causes , complications of diagnostic or surgical procedures , complications of therapeutic drug or vaccine usage , suicide , traffic accident , falls , other heart disease , gastrointestinal disease , dementia , diabetes , complications of heart disease , urinary system disease , symptoms , pulmonary circulation , nervous system disease , hypertensive disease , other bacterial disease , psychic disease , anemia , tumors other than prostate cancer , and prostate cancer .

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How Does Hormone Therapy Work Against Prostate Cancer

Early in their development, prostate cancers need androgens to grow. Hormone therapies, which are treatments that decrease androgen levels or block androgen action, can inhibit the growth of such prostate cancers, which are therefore called castration sensitive, androgen dependent, or androgen sensitive.

Most prostate cancers eventually stop responding to hormone therapy and become castration resistant. That is, they continue to grow even when androgen levels in the body are extremely low or undetectable. In the past, these tumors were also called hormone resistant, androgen independent, or hormone refractory; however, these terms are rarely used now because the tumors are not truly independent of androgens for their growth. In fact, some newer hormone therapies have become available that can be used to treat tumors that have become castration resistant.;

Prostate Cancer Cells On The Move: But Why

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Prostate cancer cells that change shape, squeeze into organs and take rootin other parts of the body. It may sound like science fiction but in thiscase its pure science.

And while the cells shapeshifting behavior is unusual, it may offer newclues about why some prostate cancer spreads. Researchers want tounderstand how the shapeshifting influences prostate cancer cells to spreadthroughout the body in some patients, while in others the cancer remains inthe prostate.

Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center scientists, whodiscovered the shape-changing process, say these cells may eventually suggest potential ways to intercept orreverse the ability of cancers to spread.

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Prostate Cancer Caregiver Podcast Series

We are proud to announce a new podcast series geared toward helping give support, hope and guidance to prostate cancer caregivers. The goal of this Prostate Cancer Caregiver Podcast Series is to help others connect with a diverse group of people who have felt the impact of prostate cancer in their lives and empower them on their journey.

Where Does Prostate Cancer Spread

The most common place for prostate cancer to spread to is the bones. It can also spread to the lymph nodes, liver and lungs and other organs.

A large tumour in the prostate gland can spread into or press on areas around the prostate, such as the back passage or urethra. The urethra is the tube which carries urine from the bladder to the outside of the body.

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What Are The Signs Of Prostate Cancer

Most early prostate cancers are detected with PSA tests or digital rectal exams before they cause any symptoms. However, more advanced prostate cancers can cause a variety of symptoms including:;

  • Trouble starting to urinate .;
  • Urinating much more often than usual.;
  • The feeling that you can’t release all of your urine.;
  • Pain with urination or ejaculation.;
  • Blood in your urine or semen.;
  • Impotence/erectile dysfunction.
  • Numbness in the lower extremities.;;
  • Loss of bladder or bowel control.

All of these symptoms can be caused by things other than prostate cancer, so experiencing them doesn’t necessarily mean you have prostate cancer. When older men have problems urinating, it is usually caused by a problem called benign prostatic hyperplasia , which is not prostate cancer. If you have any of these symptoms, you need to see your provider for testing.;

Transurethral Resection Of The Prostate

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This operation is more often used to treat men with non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate called benign prostatic hyperplasia . But it is also sometimes used in men with advanced prostate cancer to help relieve symptoms, such as trouble urinating.

During this operation, the surgeon removes the inner part of the prostate gland that surrounds the urethra . The skin is not cut with this surgery. An instrument called a resectoscope is passed through the tip of the penis into the urethra to the level of the prostate. Once it is in place, either electricity is passed through a wire to heat it or a laser is used to cut or vaporize the tissue. Spinal anesthesia or general anesthesia is used.

The operation usually takes about an hour. After surgery, a catheter is inserted through the penis and into the bladder. It remains in place for about a day to help urine drain while the prostate heals. You can usually leave the hospital after 1 to 2 days and return to normal activities in 1 to 2 weeks.

You will probably have some blood in your urine after surgery.

Other possible side effects from TURP include infection and any risks that come with the type of anesthesia used.

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How The Prostate Changes As You Age

Because the prostate gland tends to grow larger with age, it may squeeze the urethra and cause problems in passing urine. Sometimes men in their 30s and 40s may begin to have these urinary symptoms and need medical attention. For others, symptoms aren’t noticed until much later in life. An infection or a tumor can also make the prostate larger. Be sure to tell your doctor if you have any of the urinary symptoms listed below.

Tell your doctor if you have these urinary symptoms:

  • Are passing urine more during the day
  • Have an urgent need to pass urine
  • Have less urine flow
  • Feel burning when you pass urine
  • Need to get up many times during the night to pass urine

Growing older raises your risk of prostate problems. The three most common prostate problems are inflammation , enlarged prostate , and prostate cancer.

One change does not lead to another. For example, having prostatitis or an enlarged prostate does not increase your risk of prostate cancer. It is also possible for you to have more than one condition at the same time.

What Will Happen In The Last Few Days

It can help to know what is normal in the last few days of life so that you know what to expect. You might not be aware of these changes when they happen because you may be drowsy or unconscious.

If you’re supporting someone who is dying, read about;what you can do to help and how you can get support.

Pain

Many people worry about being in pain when they are dying. Some people do get pain if their prostate cancer presses on their nerves or makes their bones weak. But not everyone dying from prostate cancer has pain. And if you are in pain, there are things that can help to reduce and manage pain.;

You should tell your doctor or nurse if youre in pain or if your pain gets worse. They can talk with you about how best to manage your pain and can help keep it under control. ;

You may find sitting or lying in some positions more comfortable than others, so ask if you need help getting into a different position.;

Your doctor can give you medicines to help manage pain. The type of medicines;they give you will depend on what is causing the pain and which;medicines;are suitable.;

Your doctor will monitor how the pain medicines;are working and may change the type of medicine;or the dose. If youre still in pain or get pain in between taking medicines, its important to tell your doctor or nurse.

Sleeping and feeling drowsy;

Not recognising people

Feeling restless or agitated

Changes in skin temperature or colour

Changes in breathing;

Loss of appetite

Changes in urinating or bowel movements;

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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.;

Other Locations Of Pain From Prostate Cancer

Prostate Conditions: What You Need to Be Aware Of

Pain during urination

Painful ejaculation

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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Your Prostate Has Four Areas

The prostate gland contains four areas, or zones.

The peripheral zone is the largest segment, containing about 75% of the glands in the prostate. Most prostate cancer occurs in the peripheral zone and is the site where most needle biopsies are taken. The peripheral zone contains the majority of the prostatic tissue.

The central zone of the prostate gland is the area that surrounds the ejaculatory ducts. Less than 5% of prostate cancers originate here. However, if prostate cancer does originate here, it is more aggressive and can metastasize to the seminal vesicles.

The transition zone surrounds the urethra in the place where it enters the prostate. This part of the prostate grows in adult men and is responsible for BPH, or the enlarged prostate. Around 20% of cancers originate here.

The fourth zone is the anterior fibromuscular storma.

What Are Prostate Cancer Survival Rates By Stage

Staging evaluation is essential for the planning of treatment for prostate cancer.

  • A basic staging evaluation includes the patient examination, blood tests, and the prostate biopsy including ultrasound images of the prostate.
  • Further testing and calculations may be performed to best estimate a patient’s prognosis and help the doctor and patient decide upon treatment options.

Prognosis refers to the likelihood that the cancer can be cured by treatment, and what the patient’s life expectancy is likely to be as a consequence of having had a prostate cancer diagnosis.

If a cancer is cured, your life expectancy is what it would have been had you never been diagnosed with prostate cancer. If the cancer cannot be cured due to it recurring in distant locations as metastases, or recurs either locally or in an area no longer able to be treated in a curative manner, then estimates can be made of what is likely to be your survival based again on group statistics for people who have been in the same situation.

Nomograms are charts or computer-based tools that use complex math from analysis of many patients’ treatment results.

The prognosis for prostate cancer varies widely, and depends on many factors, including the age and health of the patient, the stage of the tumor when it was diagnosed, the aggressiveness of the tumor, and the cancer’s responsiveness to treatment, among other factors.

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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.

Whats Involved In A Prostate Exam And When Is It Needed

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Due to the location of the prostate , it is possible to feel the organ with a finger inserted into the rectum. The tissues of the stroma give the prostate an elastic feel to the touch.

Several prostate health issues may develop as a man ages,;in particular prostatitis , enlarged prostate , and prostate cancer.

A prostate exam, also known as a digital rectal exam, is a common procedure to help diagnose these issues.

For the exam, a doctor will insert a gloved, lubricated finger into your rectum while you’re standing, bending forward at the waist, or lying on your side with knees pulled up .

The doctor will feel your prostate to determine its size and look for bumps, hard spots, or other abnormalities that may be indicative of prostate cancer.

The prostate exam is not typically painful unless there’s an abnormality within your prostate.

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Is The Psa Test Recommended For Prostate Cancer Screening

Until about 2008, some doctors and professional organizations encouraged yearly PSA screening for men beginning at age 50. Some organizations recommended that men who are at higher risk of prostate cancer, including African-American men and men whose father or brother had prostate cancer, begin screening at age 40 or 45. However, as more was learned about both the benefits and harms of prostate cancer screening, a number of organizations began to caution against routine population screening. Most organizations recommend that men who are considering PSA screening first discuss the risks and benefits with their doctors.

Currently, Medicare provides coverage for an annual PSA test for all Medicare-eligible men age 50 and older. Many private insurers cover PSA screening as well.

Prostate Massage Therapy And Why It May Be Helpful

Prostate massage therapy , in which the prostate is stimulated through the rectum, was once a popular treatment for prostatitis.

The procedure is similar to a digital rectal exam, except rather than briefly looking for abnormalities on the prostate, the person performing the prostatic message rubs the prostate with light to moderate pressure until it secretes fluid through the urethra .

It was once thought that people could relieve symptoms related to prostatic congestion by expelling inflammatory cells and fluid from the obstructed glands. But this therapy largely fell out of favor in the 1960s, once antibiotics became available.

A study published in the journal Neurology tested whether prostate massage could be used as an adjunct treatment for people with chronic prostatitis, but the researchers found that the treatment did not significantly help patients.

In some cases, doctors have used prostate massage therapy to obtain sperm from men with spinal cord injuries, leading to successful pregnancies. But electroejaculation ;stimulating the prostate using an electric current delivered through a probe inserted into the rectum typically yields more sperm, noted an article published in the journal Nature Reviews Urology.

Using prostate massage to achieve ejaculation is sometimes called prostate milking. Both prostate massage and prostate milking can also be sexual techniques to stimulate pleasure.

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Who Is More Likely To Have Prostate Cancer Recurrence

In general, the further your cancer has spread and the more aggressive it is, the more likely it is to recur. Specific factors include:

  • Tumor size: In general, the larger the tumor, the more likely it is to recur.
  • Gleason score: A higher Gleason score means a more aggressive cancer and a higher rate of recurrence.
  • Cancer staging: Staging refers to how far the cancer has spread. Higher stage cancers have spread further at initial treatment and have higher rates of recurrence.
  • Involvement of the lymph nodes: Prostate cancer that has entered the lymph nodes prior to treatment is more likely to recur.