Common Signs That Lead to Prostate Cancer

March 3, 2022
Common Signs That Lead to Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer is one of the most common--and deadliest--cancers affecting men. According to the American Cancer Society, 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with cancer during their lifetime. It’s the second leading cause of cancer deaths among American men, right behind lung cancer. 

Thankfully, prostate cancer is more treatable than ever. Most men diagnosed with this disease will not die from it, and they can continue to live normal, happy lives after treatment. However, this assumes that a man diagnosed with this cancer pursues proper treatment. Medical care--specifically oncology, or cancer medicine--is essential to improving the survival rate of prostate cancer.

Before treatment, though, a person must identify the problem. The earlier a person is diagnosed with prostate cancer, the better their chances are of successful treatment. Doctors look for certain signs to identify prostate cancer and pursue diagnostic testing. Knowing the signs that can lead to prostate cancer may help you get medical care faster and save your life. 

Signs of Prostate Cancer

Here are the most common signs that you should know, whether you’re a man or have an adult male loved one in your life:

  • Consistent trouble urinating, including a weak stream of urine or less frequent urination
  • Blood in the urine
  • Blood in the semen
  • Unexplained loss of weight or appetite, especially if weight loss is sudden and fast
  • Erectile dysfunction (Please note that erectile dysfunction is common in older men, and it is often a sign of aging, not cancer; however, it’s a particular sign of prostate cancer when experienced alongside other problems on this list.)

Risk Factors

While there are no certain prostate cancer causes, doctors do know about common risk factors that may increase your risk of prostate cancer. These include:

  • Race: Non-Hispanic black men are more likely than men of other racial backgrounds to develop prostate cancer. It is also more likely to be aggressive in black men.
  • Age: Men over 65 are also at increased risk. The average age of prostate cancer diagnosis is exactly 66 years of age.
  • Family History: If a blood relative, especially a close relative like your father or brother, has been diagnosed with prostate cancer, you may be at a higher risk of prostate cancer too. In fact, men related to women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer are also at increased risk.
  • Obesity: Obese men may be more likely to develop prostate cancer than those who are at a healthy weight. This disease can be more aggressive, as well as more likely to occur multiple times, in obese men.  Maintain a healthy lifestyle to reduce your risk.

What Is the Prostate?

The prostate is a walnut-shaped gland that is exclusive to the male sex organs. This gland is responsible for producing seminal fluid, which is then transported to the urethra. It is located low in the pelvis, above the space between the testicles and anus. 

Prostate cancer occurs in this gland, but it can spread to other parts of the body, which may make the cancer more deadly. Physicians and scientists still don’t know exactly what causes cancer of the prostate or why prostate organ cells are so likely to become cancerous.

Testing for Prostate Cancer

There are things men can do to reduce their risk of prostate cancer and to increase their survivability rate should they be diagnosed with this disease. Talk to a doctor about maintaining a healthy weight, including through diet and exercise. If you’re concerned about your risk, schedule regular prostate exams. 

Finally, if you’re at increased risk or are showing any of the above signs of prostate cancer, see a doctor right away. The Oncology specialists at BASS Cancer Center can test for prostate cancer, and, if needed, set you on a path to treatment as soon as possible. If you’re in the Walnut Creek, CA, area, call us today at (925) 433-8786 to schedule your evaluation.