Prostate Cancer - An Overview
Located at the base of the bladder, the prostate gland
covers the passage (urethra) that allows urine to flow from the male
penis. Perhaps more famously the prostate gland also is involved in
the production of certain seminal fluids that protect the male sperm.
In young and healthy men, the prostate gland is the size of a walnut.
However as the male gets older, then the prostrate gland expands in
Prostate cancer occurs when a malignant growth of cancerous cells begin to form on the gland. Unlike many other forms of cancer, prostate cancer grows very slowly. If the disease is not diagnosed sufficiently early, prostrate cancer will slowly spread its way to other parts of the body.
Prostrate cancer is one of the most common forms
of non-skin cancer in the Western World is prostrate cancer. The disease
typically strikes males over the age 40, with the most at risk bracket
being those in their sixties. In true terms, prostrate cancer most effects
men aged over 65.
There is a strong genetic impact within prostrate
cancer sufferers. The mortality rates amongst the African-American males
from prostrate cancer are two and one half times higher than amongst
Conventional medicine is largely unaware what causes
prostrate cancer. They only know that it is spread through the male
sex hormone testosterone.
Statistics relating to
prostrate cancer show that males who have had a single relative who
has been diagnosed with prostate cancer are two times more likely to
suffer from the disease. Even more so for those with two or more family
members who have been struck by prostrate cancer. In this case their
chances are almost four times as high that they too will be stricken
by the disease at some time in their lives. These statistics are considerably
amplified if the relative or relatives were diagnosed with the disease
under the age of 65.
Genetics is not the only factor in setting the risk factors for the disease. Other factors that could be taken into account are diet and lifestyle. The change in the way people eat over the last two decades has brought with it dramatic increases in obesity levels. Doctors conclude that obesity may be a critical factor in the increases in the level of prostrate gland cancer sufferers.
An imbalance of antigen levels in the blood stream of overweight males can also cause a delay in diagnosing the disease, causing an increased level of fatalities from the disease.
Increased awareness among males of the risks of prostrate
cancer has led many health centers and clinics to offer the opportunity
to screen potential sufferers. Conventional medicine sources state that
the opinion on whether wide scale screening is justified is still unclear.
Those in favor state that early diagnosis means early prostate
cancer treatment and less suffering from the known side effects
of the treatment.
Those who are not in favor of a pre-emptive screening
lamely point out that because of the nature of the disease, prostrate
cancer spreads very slowly. Therefore it would be better for the disease
to have spread before treating it.
Sadly, a key factor that does not encourage hope for those who advocate the cause of pre-screening is that most males are reluctant to expose themselves to the unpleasant issues surrounding the tests. Doctor's who treat patients in the high-risk bracket should take a moment to discuss with their patients the importance of taking the test and how simple it is. This does not appear to being done enough.
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