MOVEMBER IS TACKLING MEN’S HEALTH!
The Month of November is dedicated to Men’s Health, including Prostate Cancer, Testicular Cancer, Mental Health & Suicide Prevention.
Across the world, men die an average six years younger than women, and for reasons that are largely preventable. Which means that it doesn’t have to be that way: we can all take action to live healthier, happier and longer lives.
WE CAN’T AFFORD TO LET THIS CONTINUE.
Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australian men. It’s already killing hundreds of thousands of men each year, and those who survive face serious side effects.
- More than 3000 men die of prostate cancer every year.
- More men die of prostate cancer than women die of breast cancer.
- Men who are of African or Caribbean descent, & men who have a family history (brother or father), are 2.5 times more likely to get Prostate Cancer.
- The risk of getting prostate cancer by the age of 75 is 1 in 7 men.
- By the age of 85, this increases to 1 in 5.
- If detected early – 98% chance of survival beyond 5 years.
- If detected late – 26% chance of survival beyond 5 years.
WHAT IS THE PROSTATE?
Only men have a prostate. It is a small gland that sits below the bladder near the rectum. It surrounds the urethra, the passage in the penis through which urine and semen pass. The prostate gland is part of the male reproductive system. It produces most of the fluid that makes up semen that enriches sperm. The prostate needs the male hormone testosterone to grow and develop. The prostate is often described as being the size of a walnut and it is normal for it to grow as men age. Sometimes this can cause problems, such as difficulty urinating. These problems are common in older men and not always symptoms or signs of cancer.
WHAT IS PROSTATE CANCER?
Prostate cancer occurs when abnormal cells develop in the prostate. These abnormal cells can continue to multiply in an uncontrolled way and sometimes spread outside the prostate into nearby or distant parts of the body. Prostate cancer is generally a slow growing disease and the majority of men with low grade prostate cancer live for many years without symptoms and without it spreading and becoming life-threatening. However, high grade disease spreads quickly and can be lethal. Appropriate management is key.
Not everyone experiences symptoms of prostate cancer. Many times, signs of prostate cancer are first detected by a doctor during a routine check-up.
Some men, however, will experience changes in urinary or sexual function that might indicate the presence of prostate cancer.
- A need to urinate frequently, especially at night
- Difficulty starting urination or holding back urine
- Weak or interrupted flow of urine
- Painful or burning urination
- Difficulty in having an erection
- Painful ejaculation
- Blood in urine or semen
- Frequent pain or stiffness in the lower back, hips, or upper thighs
It’s a simple routine blood test.
It’s used to determine the measurement of Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) concentration in the blood, it is the primary method of testing for prostate cancer. If you’re 50, you should be talking to your doctor about PSA testing. If you’re of African or Caribbean descent, you need to start that conversation at 45. And if you have a brother or father with prostate cancer in their history, do it at 45.
It is important that if you are experiencing anything which is not normal for you to speak to you GP.
For more information on Prostate Cancer click on the below links: