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Prostate Cancer, a Nightmare

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Prostate Cancer, a Nightmare

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Prostate cancer is a man's worst nightmare, as it one of the most common diseases in men. Learn about its stages, symptoms, and treatment.

Written by

Ahmed Elhaged

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Sneha Kannan

Published At August 7, 2014
Reviewed AtNovember 25, 2022

What Is Prostate Cancer?

The prostate is a gland within men's body structure that is important for the vital activity of sperm. The prostate can be a nightmare over the age of 50 years, as this gland can become a deadly cancerous organ that will lead to death. Researches indicate that prostate cancer is genetically inherited, and the risk increases when a father or brother has the disease.

So, if you have a genetic relation to this disease, you should check yourself at the age of 45 years. Some researchers have found that capsicum and black pepper may worsen this disease.

What Are the Common Diseases of Prostate?

The most common diseases of the prostate are prostatitis and prostate tumor.

  • Prostatitis is the inflammation of the prostate gland.
  • A tumor of the prostate can be a benign or malignant one.

What Are the Stages of Prostate Cancer?

Prostate cancer passes roughly through four stages:

  • The first one is when the tumor is so small and at its concise around itself.
  • The second stage is when the tumor cells begin to grow and reproduce more. But still, it is concise to the same place.
  • The third stage is when the tumor begins to grow outside the prostatic outline. At this stage, the prostate outline becomes irregular.
  • The fourth stage is when the tumor cells spread outside to the nearby bones (for example, pelvic bone) and lymph nodes. This spread from the primary site of the tumor to the other bones and lymph nodes is termed metastasis.

What Are the Symptoms?

The symptoms of prostate cancer are:

  • Difficulty in urination.
  • Feeling pain during urination.
  • Blood in the urine.
  • Increased urination at night.
  • Bone pain in cases of metastasis.

What Are the Methods of Investigation?

We have to determine an indicator that will direct us toward the right place, which is the PSA.

PSA (Prostate-Specific Antigen) is a tumor marker, the increase of which will indicate cancer in our body.

TRUS (Transrectal Ultrasound) scan is used to detect the enlargement of the prostate through the anal opening. A specimen of the prostate can also be taken by this method.

The specimen can be examined in a well-equipped pathological lab to determine if the cells are cancerous.

The tumor cells will be irregular, disoriented, and non-functional and grow rapidly.

How Is Prostate Cancer Treated?

Early detected prostate cancer can be totally cured by medications.

In the early stages, when prostate cancer is still in stage one, urologists prefer surgical removal of the prostate (prostatectomy).

The prostate can be removed by laser or radical prostatectomy (surgical removal of the prostate along with the removal of some tissue around it).

In the last stage, castration is done. Castration by surgically removing the testicles so as to stop the secretion of the male hormone (testosterone). This process is called orchiectomy. This, in turn, stops or delays the growth of cancerous cells.

Prostate cancer is hormone sensitive because it grows due to the response of the male hormone (testosterone). Therefore, hormonal therapy is a must in the metastatic stage.

After treatment with hormonal therapy, PSA becomes low for a certain period of time.

CRPC (Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer) can be treated by chemotherapy.

Frequently Asked Questions


What Causes Prostate Cancer?

Like any other cancer, there is no known cause for prostate cancer. It develops when some abnormal cells in the prostate gland divide more rapidly. The risk factors include older men, family history, African American males, obesity, and genetic mutation.


How To Prevent Prostate Cancer?

Prostate cancer cannot really be prevented, but you can try the following to reduce the risk:
- Avoid high-fat food and consume a healthy diet.
- Exercise regularly.
- Lose weight if you are overweight.
- If you are at high risk for developing prostate cancer, Finasteride and Dutasteride have been found to reduce the risk.


What Are The early signs of Prostate Cancer?

Most people do not show any sign of cancer in the early stages as it is nonaggressive. Urinary problems like frequent urination, a weak stream of urine, and blood in the urine are often the first signs you might notice. But remember, there are other conditions that can cause these symptoms also.


What Are The Symptoms Of End Stage Prostate Cancer?

As cancer progresses, you might have the following symptoms:
- Frequent urination.
- A weak stream of urine.
- Blood in the urine.
- Erectile dysfunction.
- Pain and numbness in the chest, back, and pelvic if cancer metastasizes.


How To Test For Prostate Cancer?

If your routine blood test showed elevated PSA (prostate-specific antigen), then your doctor might suggest you get a digital rectal examination (DRE) and biomarker test done. If these tests show abnormal results, then you might need to do the following tests:
- PCA3 (prostate cancer antigen 3) test.
- Transrectal ultrasound scan.
- Biopsy.
- CT or MRI scan.


How To Prevent Prostate Cancer Naturally?

Some natural ways that help reduce the risk of prostate cancer are:
- Products that contain isoflavones like tofu, miso, beans, alfalfa, and chickpeas.
- Omega-3 fatty acids (fatty fish, walnuts, flax seeds).
- Tomatoes.


What are the stages of Prostate Cancer?

Depending on the size, extent, and if the tumor has metastasized, the stages are:
- Stage I - Early stage of cancer, where it is usually slow-growing.
- Stage II - The cancer is confined to only the prostate, and PSA levels are low.
- Stage III - The tumor is growing, and PSA levels are high.
- Stage IV - Cancer has spread to other body parts.


Is Prostate Cancer Usually Fatal?

The survival rate depends on the stage at which cancer gets detected. Early detection and treatment help patients live disease-free. And the survival rate for patients with stage IV cancer is 5 years.


What Is The Survival Rate For Prostate Cancer That Has Spread?

The survival rate for 99 % of patients with stage IV cancer, where cancer spreads to other body parts, is 5 years.


Does Prostate Cancer Spread Quickly?

No, prostate cancer is nonaggressive and does not spread quickly. It usually takes about 15 years for cancer to develop and spread to other body parts.
Ahmed Elhaged
Ahmed Elhaged



prostatitisprostatectomyradical prostatectomyprostate cancerprostate-specific antigen
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