What number of people is it killing?
In Britain, more than 11800 men are affected by this disease each year. This compares to the 11,400 breast cancer victims.
This means that prostate cancer ranks second to bowel and lung in the number of people who are killed by it in Britain.
The disease claims 26,000 lives each year in the United States.
It receives half of the breast cancer research funding, and the treatments are lagging at best a decade.
It develops how quickly?
Prostate cancer usually develops slowly, so there may be no signs someone has it for many years, according to the NHS.
A policy of “watchful waiting” or “active surveillance” may be used if the cancer has not advanced and isn’t causing any symptoms.
It is possible to cure some people if they are treated early.
If it is diagnosed later, after it has spread to other parts of the body, it can become terminal. Treatment revolves around symptoms.
Due to the side effects of treatment such as erectile dysfunction, thousands of men put off seeking diagnosis.
Testing and Treatment
The tests for prostate cancer can be hazardous, and accurate tools are just starting to appear.
As the test results have proven too inconsistent over many years, there’s no national screening program for prostate.
It is difficult for doctors to differentiate between more serious and aggressive tumours.
Men over 50 are eligible for a ‘PSA’ blood test which gives doctors a rough idea of whether a patient is at risk.
However, it’s not reliable. A biopsy is usually provided to patients who have a positive test result. This also makes it less reliable.
While scientists don’t know what causes prostate carcinoma, they do know that age, obesity, and inactivity are all possible risk factors.
If you have any questions, please call Prostate Cancer UK’s Specialist Nurses on 0800 744 8383. Or visit prostatecanceruk.org.