Do You Live In Fear Of Prostate Cancer Every Time Your Hip Bone Area Begins Aching As You Imagine That This Is A Metastasis From A Tumor In Your Prostate
Every prostate cancer is unique, says Michael Herman, MD, Director of Urologic Oncology at South Nassau Communities Hospital in Oceanside, NY.
Occasionally, there are aggressive prostate cancers that spread to the bones early , but the majority of prostate cancers take years to spread to the bones, if in fact they ever do, continues Dr. Herman.
In most cases of these metastases, the first area is actually the bones including the hip.
Luckily, many prostate cancers are not aggressive, and if men are diagnosed with these types of prostate cancer, they typically die with the disease, not because of the disease.
The important thing is to distinguish between these non-aggressive, or indolent, prostate cancers, and the more aggressive types.
As of now, the only way to know whether or not you have an aggressive or indolent prostate cancer is to go to a urologist and get screened for prostate cancer.
If it turns out that you are at risk for aggressive prostate cancer, a prostate biopsy may be necessary.
If youre having hip pain but have not been diagnosed with prostate cancer, chances are exceedingly high that your hurting hip is musculoskeletal in origin or reacting to pressure applied to it such as from a tight seatbelt.
Dr. Hermans interests include reducing the over-diagnosis and over-treatment of prostate cancer by utilizing the latest biomarkers and imaging techniques. He is at the forefront of treatment and research of urologic cancers.
The Basics Of Prostate Cancer
Prostate cancer occurs when the cells in the prostate, a male reproductive gland, begin to grow out of control and develop into cancerous cells.
The prostate gland is only found in males and is the gland that creates some of the fluid that is in semen. It is a walnut-sized gland located below the bladder and in front of the rectum. The urethra the tube that carries urine and semen to the penis travels through the center of the prostate.
Nearly all prostate cancers are adenocarcinomas, which grow from the gland cells and grow slowly.
But Why Is The Prostate Synonymous With Problems
So long as its working well, most men dont think much about the prostate. Yet its location surrounding and surrounded by, a couple of extremely sensitive parts of the male anatomy, the bladder and penis means that when things go wrong, they can really go wrong.
Lets start with benign prostate enlargement, when the prostate grows larger while no cancer is present. As the gland naturally grows over a mans lifetime, it sometimes not always compresses the surrounding tissue. Because the prostate surrounds the urethra, the tube that carries urine from the bladder, this natural enlargement can make it difficult to urinate, and can irritate the bladder.
It leads to those old men symptoms of the waterworks slowing down, dribbling, says Murphy.
In fact, this can become a problem for men as young as 30, and becomes common as men age. About half of American men aged between 51 and 60, and up to 90 per cent of men over 80, will have benign prostatic hyperplasia. One Dutch study reported nearly one in five men aged between 55 and 74 had a clinically enlarged prostate. Diabetes, obesity or high blood pressure create a greater risk. Most men will not show symptoms but those who do might find themselves passing urine more often than normal, and having an urgent need to urinate coupled with a slow urine flow.
Importantly, having an enlarged prostate or prostatitis does not increase your risk of prostate cancer.
So What Are The Warning Signs Of Prostate Cancer
Unfortunately, there usually arent any early warning signs for prostate cancer. The growing tumor does not push against anything to cause pain, so for many years the disease may be silent. Thats why screening for prostate cancer is such an important topic for all men and their families.
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In rare cases, prostate cancer can cause symptoms. Contact your doctor for an evaluation if you experience any of the following:
- A need to urinate frequently, especially at night, some- times urgently
- Difficulty starting or holding back urination
- Weak, dribbling, or interrupted flow of urine
- Painful or burning urination
- Difficulty in having an erection
- A decrease in the amount of fluid ejaculated
- Painful ejaculation
- Blood in the urine or semen
- Pressure or pain in the rectum
- Pain or stiffness in the lower back, hips, pelvis, or thighs
What about difficulty in having an erection? Again, this is most likely not caused by cancer but by other factors such as diabetes, smoking, cardiovascular disease, or just plain getting older.
That said: Symptoms are symptoms, and no matter whats most likely to be causing them, you should get them checked out by a doctor.
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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
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Testing Options For Prostate Cancer
There is no one age for prostate cancer testing, but the American Cancer Society makes recommendations about screenings. According to the ACS, patients in any of these groups should consider asking their doctor about testing:
- Men age 50 or older who have an average risk of prostate cancer and a life expectancy of at least 10 more years
- Men age 45 or older with a high risk, including African-American men and those with a first-degree relative who had prostate cancer before age 65
- Men age 40 or older who have a higher risk, such as more than one first-degree relative diagnosed with prostate cancer at an early age
Surgery For Prostate Cancer
There are many types of surgery for prostate cancer. Some are done to try to cure the cancer others are done to control the cancer or make symptoms better. Talk to the doctor about the kind of surgery planned and what you can expect.
Side effects of surgery
Any type of surgery can have risks and side effects. Be sure to ask the doctor what you can expect. If you have problems, let your doctors know so they can help you.
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What Are My Treatment Options With Advanced Prostate Cancer
The treatments your doctor recommends will depend on factors specific to you, from your overall health to how advanced your cancer was when it was first diagnosed.
Many men receive ADT, a type of hormone therapy, which deprives the body of the male hormones that the cancer needs to keep growing.
For most men, however, hormone therapy stops working at some point. Alternatives to hormone therapy were approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 2018, and Tagawa often starts men on these therapies as soon as theyre diagnosed with bone metastases. Other treatment options may be available through clinical trials.
In addition, chemotherapy, surgery, and immunotherapy as well as radiation treatments, like external beam radiation, which directly target bone problems may be considered. Major cancer centers, such as Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City and MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, have teams of prostate cancer specialists, as well as sophisticated radiation and other treatment equipment consolidated in one place, which can help with the coordination of care.
What Does A Dre Involve
You might have a DRE at your GP surgery or at the hospital.
The doctor or nurse will ask you to lie on your side on an examination table, with your knees brought up towards your chest. They will slide a finger gently into your back passage. Theyll wear gloves and put some gel on their finger to make it more comfortable.
You may find the DRE slightly uncomfortable or embarrassing, but the test isnt usually painful and it doesnt take long.
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Urinating Frequently During The Day
It may be more difficult to notice a change in frequency during the day than at night. Most of us dont go around counting how many times we use the washroom in a given day!
Besides, whats normal, anyway?
Normal urination during the day is considered to be within a range offour to seven times for most healthy adult men. If youre going more often than this, it could indicate a prostate issue.
It can be easy to miss this sign. Drinking more water or caffeinated beverages than usual can be an easy explanation for a few extra trips.
Even a night out for dinner with a few more glasses of beer than usual can cause several extra trips to the bathroom because alcohol is a diuretic, meaning it triggers anincrease in urine production.
But like your nighttime routine, if you notice an ongoing pattern of having to go more often during the day, ask your doctor about it. A simple blood test and rectal examination is often the first diagnostic step, which is quick and painless.
Lets Say I Need Treatment What Are My Options
First-line therapies for prostate cancer that remains inside the gland or has spread to nearby organs include radiation to kill the cancerous cells hormone injections also known as medical castration which suppresses testosterone and surgery.
Testosterone is a fuel for prostate cancer growth, much like estrogen is a fuel for many breast cancers, says Azad. When you do that, its a very effective treatment, but when you significantly cut testosterone in men, there are a lot of side effects on their libido, their energy, their muscle mass.
For advanced prostate cancer, chemotherapy is also offered, in which drugs are used to kill or slow the growth of cancer cells. Side effects include hair loss and an increased risk of bleeding and infection.
Surgery to manually remove tissue from the prostate is not a routine part of treating advanced prostate cancer. And when they are carried out, these surgeries can be prohibitively expensive, with costs ranging from $14,000 to $55,000, depending on the surgeon.
The evidence does not tell us to do it. There is no proven role for surgery in advanced prostate cancer, says Azad.
The problem with all these therapies is many do lead to side effects, including incontinence, erectile dysfunction and bowel problems hence the desire by doctors to avoid treatment if possible.
Should I Make Any Lifestyle Changes Including In My Diet Or Physical Activity
Achieving and maintaining a healthy weight by eating a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and staying physically active, can help your overall health. These lifestyle changes can also have a positive effect for men with bone metastases, Tagawa says. Both diet and exercise, he says, are things that are under a mans direct control.
A healthy lifestyle can help you better manage side effects from treatment as well. Try setting small but realistic goals for yourself when it comes to eating a healthy diet and getting plenty of exercise.
While no single food is likely to have a benefit for prostate cancer, smart food choices may help you feel better day to day. Start by cutting out foods high in sugar, saturated fat, and added flavorings and preservatives.
If youre not sure which healthy foods to choose, ask your doctor for a referral to a dietitian. This specialist can help you develop a meal plan that includes foods that offer the best chance of slowing the cancers growth and keeping you as healthy as possible.
As an oncologist, Tagawa says he concentrates on treating the cancer itself, but hes aware that many of the men he sees with advanced prostate cancer are older and more likely than younger men to have health problems that can benefit from diet and exercise.
And if youre on hormone therapy, talk to your doctor about investing in some weights or elastic resistance bands to support your bone strength too.
What Does A Prostate Orgasm Feel Like
P-spot orgasms are said to feel similar to penile orgasms, only way more intense and felt through the entire body.
There are reports of people having super orgasms, which are a stream of fast, continuous orgasms that cause the body to shudder.
Not everyone ejaculates during a prostate orgasm, but some release a dribble of milky fluid from the urethra.
A little bit of prep can help make the experience a good one whether youre flying solo, or on the giving or receiving end of things.
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Can I Check For Prostate Cancer At Home
It is strongly advised under any circumstances not to self-examine for prostate cancer at home either by yourself or with a partner. Not only does it take a skilled professional to assess how the prostate feels to make an accurate determination of overall prostate health, self-examinations have the potential to cause injury.
âSince the prostate is an internal gland, itâs extremely important that only licensed medical professionals conduct the exam. At-home self-exams should not be administered in order to avoid injury or self-harm. Regular screening is important for prostate cancer, as the disease often does not present symptoms until it is too late. Talk to your doctor about making sure you receive a regular DRE check-up at each visit.â
While actually screening yourself for prostate cancer at home is ill advised, you can still monitor your risk factors for prostate cancer between yearly check-ups, like practicing a healthy diet and exercising regularly.
First What Is Prostate Cancer
Prostate cancer is cancer that occurs in the prostate â a small walnut-shaped gland in men. This is the gland that produces the seminal fluid that nourishes and transports sperm. Prostate cancer is one of the most common cancers in men. Thankfully some prostate cancers are slow growing, without causing serious harm. However, others are aggressive, so for both scenarios, identifying the cancer earlier is key.
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How Do You Decide Whether To Get A Psa Scan
As you can see, theres a lot of debate. To help cut through, the RACGP has published a decision-making tool.
Take 2000 men aged between 55 and 69, and give 1000 of them an annual PSA test every year for 11 years. What happens?
Five men will die from prostate cancer in the untested group and four in the tested group. Overall, one life will be saved. Some would argue this is an excellent thing mortality cut by about 20 per cent.
However, the tested group bear significant side effects. Some 87 men will learn their test was a false positive after having a surgical biopsy. Some 25 men will choose to be treated because they are fearful of their cancers as a result of the treatment, seven to 10 men will experience impotence or incontinence. Theres a mental dimension as well men diagnosed with low-risk prostate cancer are more likely to develop anxiety and depression.
Importantly, because of the amount of time it takes for prostate cancer to kill, men with life expectancies of fewer than 10 to 15 years are unlikely to get much benefit from screening.
For Will McDonald, over-diagnosis wasnt a problem. The cancer had spread he needed treatment immediately. He went through chemotherapy, radiotherapy and hormone deprivation therapy, stripping nearly all the testosterone from his body.
I feel very fortunate to be able to say this, but it barely touched the sides. I had so little side effects, I was so lucky, he says.
What Should I Do If I Have Prostate Cancer Symptoms
If you are displaying one or more signs of prostate cancer, be sure to promptly consult with a physician. Even benign prostate conditions like prostate enlargement warrant timely medical attention, so dont delay seeking treatment. And, like most other malignancies, prostate cancer is usually more easily treated when it is detected at an early stage.
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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.