What is it?
happens when cells in the prostate begin to grow out of control and can then
invade nearby tissues or spread throughout the body. Usually, prostate cancer
is very slow growing. However, sometimes it will grow quickly and spread
to nearby lymph nodes. Lymph nodes are small, pea-sized pieces of tissue
that filter and clean lymph, a clear liquid waste product. If prostate cancer
has spread to your lymph nodes when it is diagnosed, it means that there
is higher chance that it has spread to other areas of the body.
puts me at risk?
As you get older, your risk of prostate cancer increases.
or ethnic group. For reasons that aren't well understood,
black men are more likely to have prostate cancer than
are men of any other group in the United States. Asian-American
men, on the other hand, have the lowest rate of prostate
cancer. The rate of prostate cancer in Hispanic and American
Indian men is lower than in white men.
history. If a close family member - your father or
brother - has prostate cancer, your risk of the disease
is greater than that of the average American male.
For more information on family history, log onto:
U.S. Surgeon General ’s Family History Initiative
- Diet. A
high-fat diet may increase the risk of prostate cancer. Researchers
theorize that fat increases production of the hormone testosterone,
which in turn speeds development of prostate cancer cells.
factors that predispose men to prostate cancer are older
age, black race, and a family history of prostate cancer
(a history of having an affected first-degree relative at
least doubles the risk) (4). According to the American Cancer
Society, about 70% of all men with clinically diagnosed prostate
cancer are aged 65 years or older (5). Because prostate cancer
usually occurs at an age when conditions such as heart disease
and stroke cause death, many men die with prostate
cancer rather than from it.
Cancer Control Plan
the risk factors for prostate cancer are inherent and therefore
not preventable, certain tests can be preformed for early
diagnosis and screening. Comprehensive
Cancer Control Plan
E has shown promise in reducing the risk of prostate
cancer among smokers. More research is needed, however,
to fully determine the extent of these benefits of vitamin
- Exercise has
been shown to strengthen your immune system, improve circulation
and speed digestion - all of which may play a role in cancer
prevention. Exercise also helps to prevent obesity, another
potential risk factor for some cancers. Regular exercise
may also reduce your risk of benign prostatic hyperplasia
(BPH) or minimize your symptoms. Men who are physically
active usually have less severe symptoms than men who get
diets have been linked to prostate cancer. Therefore,
limiting your intake of high-fat foods and emphasizing
fruits, vegetables and whole fibers may help you reduce
your risk. Foods rich in lycopenes, an antioxidant, also
may help lower your prostate cancer risk. These foods
include raw or cooked tomatoes, tomato products, grapefruit
and watermelon. Garlic and cruciferous vegetables such
as arugula, bok choy, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage
and cauliflower also appear to help fight cancer.
products contain isoflavones that seem to keep testosterone
in check. Because prostate cancer feeds off testosterone,
isoflavones may reduce the risk and progression of the
for Early Detection
with your doctor about the best procedures for you.
Prostate cancer frequently doesn't produce symptoms. The first
indication of a problem may come during a routine screening
test. Screening tests include:
rectal exam (DRE). During a DRE, your doctor inserts a
gloved, lubricated finger into your rectum to examine your
prostate, which is adjacent to the rectum. If your doctor
finds any abnormalities in the texture, shape or size of your
gland, you may need more tests.
antigen (PSA) test. A blood sample is drawn from a vein
and analyzed for PSA, a substance that's naturally produced
by the prostate gland to help liquefy semen. It's normal for
a small amount of PSA to enter the bloodstream. However, if
higher than normal levels are found, it may be an indication
of prostate infection, inflammation, enlargement or cancer.
1986 the FDA approved the PSA test as a method to monitor
prostate cancer progression. The PSA test permitted the
detection of latent and preclinical cancer that can't
be detected by clinical means.
test. A sample of your urine is analyzed for abnormalities
that may indicate a problem. This test doesn't detect prostate
cancer, but it can help detect or rule out other conditions
that may cause similar signs and symptoms.
ultrasound. If other tests raise concerns, your doctor
may use transrectal ultrasound to further evaluate your prostate.
A small probe is inserted into your rectum. The probe uses
sound waves to get a picture of your prostate gland.
For more information on screening and free screening services, visit:
there's more than one way to treat prostate cancer. For some
men a combination of treatments - such as surgery followed
by radiation or radiation paired with hormone therapy - works
best. The treatment you choose may depend on several factors.
These include how fast your cancer is growing, how much it
has spread, your age and your health, as well as the benefits
and the potential side effects of the treatment.
most common treatments for prostate cancer include the following:
beam radiation. External beam radiation treatment uses
high-powered X-rays to kill cancer cells. A machine is
used to deliver the radiation beam. This type of radiation
is effective at destroying cancerous cells, but it can
also damage adjacent healthy tissue.
therapy. When you have prostate cancer, male sex hormones
(androgens) can stimulate the growth of cancer cells. The
main type of androgen is testosterone. Hormone therapy
uses drugs to try to stop your body from producing male
sex hormones. It can also block hormones from getting into
cancer cells. Sometimes doctors use a combination of drugs
to achieve both.
prostatectomy. Surgical removal of your prostate gland,
known as a radical prostatectomy, is another option to
treat cancer that's confined to your prostate gland. During
a radical prostatectomy, a surgeon use special techniques
to completely remove your prostate and local lymph nodes,
while trying to spare your muscles and nerves that control
urination and sexual function.
seed implants. Radioactive
seed implants are injected into the prostate and have gained
popularity in recent years as a treatment for prostate
cancer. The seeds, also known as radiation brachytherapy,
deliver a higher dose of radiation than do external beams.
waiting. The prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood
test can help detect prostate cancer at a very early stage.
This allows many men to choose watchful waiting as a treatment
option. In watchful waiting (also known as observation,
expectant therapy or deferred therapy), regular follow-up
blood tests, rectal exams and biopsies may be performed
to monitor for evidence of progression of your cancer.
For information on finding a doctor or treatment facility, log onto: http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Therapy/doctor-facility
- Clinical trials are research studies in which people help doctors find ways to improve health and cancer care. Each study tries to answer scientific questions and to find better ways to prevent, diagnose, or treat cancer.
- A clinical trial is one of the final stages of a long and careful cancer research process. Studies are done with cancer patients to find out whether promising approaches to cancer prevention, diagnosis, and treatment are safe and effective.
- Different types of clinical trials include:
- Treatment trials
- Prevention trials
- Screening trials
- Quality of life trials
For more information on clinical trials, log onto:
Comprehensive Cancer Control Plan
New Jersey State Cancer