Prostate and seminal vesicles are part of the male reproductive system. The main function of the prostate is to make sperm (fluid that carries sperm made in testicles). Prostate cancer refers to cancer in the man’s prostate. One of the main ways to detect any disease in the prostate, such as benign enlargement, infection or cancer, is difficulty urinating. Prasanth Kandra, Senior Consultant Radiation Oncologist, American Oncology Institute, told HT Lifestyle: “Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer in men in metro cities such as Delhi, Kolkata and Pune and the third leading cause in cities such as Mumbai and Bengaluru.”
dr. Prasanth Kandra further noted the causes, symptoms, risk factors and the treatment procedures of prostate cancer:
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The main reason for the increase in prostate cancer is due to an increase in the elderly population, changing lifestyles, increased awareness and easy access to medical facilities in cities.
Prostate cancer shows no symptoms in the early stages. In the later stages, these symptoms can help detect cancer:
1) Dull pain in the pelvic area
2) Frequent urination
3) Burning urine or weak stream
4) Blood in the urine
5) Painful Ejaculation
6) Bone pain (in stage 4).
Age – The risk of prostate cancer increases with age. Damage to the genetic material (DNA) of prostate cells is more likely in men over 55, who can become cancerous.
ethnicity – African American men have a higher incidence compared to Hispanic and Asian men.
family history – A man is 2 to 3 times more likely to get prostate cancer if his father or brother had it.
To smoke – The risk of prostate cancer doubles in heavy smokers. This further increases the risk of dying from prostate cancer.
eating pattern – Diet and lifestyle can influence the risk of prostate cancer. The risk may be higher for those who consume more calories, animal fats, refined sugars, and fewer fruits and vegetables. Obesity also contributes to increasing the risk of dying from prostate cancer.
Different specialists are involved in the treatment of prostate cancer, such as urologists, radiation oncologists and medical oncologists. Some of the treatment options are given below:
Surgery – Latest techniques such as Robotic-Assisted, Laparoscopic which are used in many hospitals. In this process, blood loss is minimal and recovery is faster.
radiotherapy – Advanced modalities such as IMRT, VMAT, IGRT and SBRT are used for radiation treatment where the dose is limited to the targeted areas while sparing surrounding normal structures.
Hormonal treatment – This treatment is used to block or lower testosterone and other male hormones that stimulate the growth of prostate cancer.
Chemotherapy – This modality is mainly used for stage 4 prostate cancers where drugs are administered intravenously or orally to kill cancer cells.
Immunotherapy – This modality is also used for advanced prostate cancers where the patient’s own immune system is activated to fight cancer cells.