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Prostate cancer is a disease that only affects men, and can be difficult to diagnose initially. Affecting the gland that is responsible for secreting the fluid that contains semen, it is also the second most common cancer diagnosed in men. It was estimated that over 230,000 men were diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2013, and health care officials agree that understanding this disease is the best way to help prevent it from affecting the quality of your life.
Causes of Prostate Cancer
While health care professionals are still studying the risks and causes of prostate cancer, there are some factors that commonly appear in men who are diagnosed with the disease. One of the main causes of prostate cancer seems to be age, and over half of men diagnosed with the disease are over the age of 65. Men of African descent are also at a higher risk while Asians and Hispanic males seem to be less likely to develop prostate cancer. Along with age and genetics, some of the other causes of prostate cancer can include,
* Your family history can also increase or lower your risk of developing prostate cancer if the disease commonly appears in closely related males your chances will be significantly higher.
* Nationality also seems to affect a man’s chances of developing prostate cancer, with North American and northern Europe having the highest number of reported cases. Some health care officials state that a man’s nationality being cited as a contributing factor is often due to the diet and amount of pollution commonly found in the region.
* Certain genetic abnormalities can also increase a man’s risk of developing prostate cancer, and many health care professionals state that it is similar to a woman’s inherited genes affecting her chances of contracting breast or ovarian cancer. There are tests that can screen for these genes, but it should also be mentioned that this is rarely the cause of prostate cancer in men.
There are some other factors that can increase your risk of developing prostate cancer, which can include poor diet and unhealthy lifestyle choices. Smoking, obesity, over indulging in alcohol, and eating foods high in fat can all significantly increase your risk of being diagnosed with prostate cancer.
Symptoms of Prostate Cancer
One of the reasons that this cancer is one of the leading causes of death in older men is that there are often no symptoms associated with the disease until it is in an advanced stage. While some men may not show any signs that something might be wrong, there are a few that males over the age of 40 should pay close attention to.
* Difficulty or a frequently needing to urinate, especially at night.
* Weak or a stream that starts and stops when you are urinating.
* Difficulty using the restroom standing up.
* Frequent pain during ejaculation or while urinating.
* Blood appearing in your semen or urine.
If you experience any of these symptoms, it could be an early warning sign, and a health care professional should be consulted. Sudden shortness of breath, rapid weight loss, and chronic fatigue are more serious symptoms associated with advanced prostate cancer, and it is important to seek immediate treatment.
Treatments for Prostate Cancer
There are several treatment options for men dealing with prostate cancer, and the right one for you will depend on various factors. The progression of the disease and your overall health will help you and your health care adviser decide on the appropriate form of treatment. Some of your options can include,
* A period of careful watching and waiting for test results and for various decisions regarding additional treatments to be made.
* Some patients elect to try hormonal therapies, along with natural supplements to boost immune systems.
* Surgery to have the affected gland removed can also help treat prostate cancer.
Other treatment options include chemo and radiation therapies, along with treatments that target your immune system. The stage of the disease and its progression will also help you choose a treatment that is best for you.
Prostate cancer is a disease that only affects males, and it is more common than many men think. While genetics and aging are common causes that cannot be changed, you can lower your risk of developing this potentially deadly disease simply by improving your lifestyle. Making healthy choices about what you eat, and avoiding harmful habits can dramatically lower your chances of contracting prostate cancer. If you are over the age of 40, it is important to speak with a health care adviser and begin regular screenings to check for the disease. Early diagnosis and a healthy lifestyle can keep you active and enjoying your golden years.
Evlin Symon is an experienced Health writer who has been at this for more than 5 Years. She is an expert in health, fitness, weight loss, nutrition and beauty. When she is not writing, she can be usually found hitting the Gym. Connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.