The prostate gland is a part of the male reproductive system that sits below the bladder and is normally the size of a walnut. Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of death in American men. The majority of men who reach the age of 80 are found to have prostate cancer however most types of this cancer at that age grow slowly and may not contribute to any serious harm. Some types of prostate cancer are very aggressive and can spread to other parts of the body.
Prostate cancer can occur at any age, but is more common in men over the age of 65. There is a higher incidence of it in African American males and men who have a family history of the disease.
Symptoms of prostate cancer include:
• Difficulty urinating
• Less forceful urination
• Need to urinate frequently
• Painful urination
• Blood in the urine or semen
• Pain in the lower back, hips, pelvis
• Unexplained weight loss
Prostate screenings are very important to help detect the disease. A blood test that measures prostate-specific antigen (PSA) and a digital rectal exam (DRE) are the two tests that a physician will start with to see if there are any abnormalities. If there is reason to believe that there is a problem other tests will be performed and this includes an ultrasound exam and a biopsy of the gland.
Treatment of prostate cancer depends on the age of the patient at the time of diagnosis, the overall health of the patient, and the amount of growth and spread of the disease. Treatment options can include surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, and hormone therapy.
To schedule an appointment with a urologist at Jamaica Hospital who can perform a prostate exam, please call 718-206-7110.
All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.