Prostate Cancer

Prostate Cancer


Prostate cancer is an uncontrolled growth and division of mutated cells in the prostate gland. The prostate gland is a walnut-shaped gland that produces seminal fluid, an important component of the male ejaculate. Prostate cancer is very common and tends to grow slowly. Prostate cancer usually does not metastasise to other organs. However, there are aggressive variants of prostate cancer too.

Signs and symptoms

Prostate cancer may not cause any symptoms in the early stages. As the cancer progresses to a more advanced stage, the patient may experience decreased force in the stream of urine, difficulty in urinating and blood in the urine and semen. The patient may also experience bone pain, have erectile dysfunction and unexplained weight loss.


Prostate cancer, like most other cancers, is caused by a genetic mutation which causes uncontrolled cell division. The exact cause or origin of the gene mutation that causes prostate cancer is unknown though.

Risk factors

Men above the age of 50 are at the highest risk of prostate cancer. Family history and obesity could also be strong risk factors for prostate cancer.


Prostate cancer can, in some cases, metastasise to other organs. Prostate cancer and its treatment could result in urinary incontinence or erectile dysfunction.


The requirement for regular screening tests for prostate cancer in healthy men with no symptoms is controversial, but it is important for men with a family history of the disease. Prostate cancer screening includes a Prostate-specific antigen test and a digital rectal exam. If the screening tests detect a prostate abnormality, the doctor may require an ultra-sound scan, and MRI scan and a prostate biopsy to confirm the diagnosis of prostate cancer. The aggressiveness of the tumour is then gauged using the Gleeson score and genomic testing.


The treatment for prostate cancer depends on the stage at which it is discovered and its aggressiveness. Early-stage, slow-growing tumours may not require immediate treatment. The doctor may elect to actively survey the tumour, keeping a periodic check on its growth and metastasis. Surgery to remove the prostate is an effective option for advanced prostate cancer. This can be done laparoscopically or through an open procedure.


Prostate cancer cannot be prevented, but the risk can be reduced by certain healthy lifestyle habits. This includes having a healthy diet, exercising regularly, maintaining a healthy weight and having regular prostate exams. If you have a family history of prostate cancer, consider getting routine screening tests for prostate cancer.

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