Treatment for Prostate Cancer in Older Men, Younger Men


Treatment for prostate cancer in men should be taken serious note of.  Men should pay attention to the health of their prostate. Why? This is because prostate cancer has been the second cause of deaths among men, next to lung cancer. Thus, by paying attention to your prostate and keeping it healthy will help spare you from developing and avoiding worrisome treatment for prostate cancer.

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But what is prostate cancer? This refers to the abnormal and uncontrolled cell growth that develops on the prostate. Fortunately, treatment for prostate cancer is available but certain factors must be considered before starting any treatment options such as the patient’s overall health, age, cancer growth and the extent it has spread out. Moreover, one must also know the benefits, side effects and risk factors associated with every treatment option. Thus, treatment must be assessed individually based on the aforementioned factors. However, there are some instances where immediate treatment for prostate cancer is not necessary. Read on.

When immediate treatment is not considered


When the prostate cancer is still at the early stage, immediate treatment is not considered. Instead, doctors oftentimes suggest doing what they call active surveillance which primarily involves having regular blood tests, biopsies to monitor cancer development and rectal exams. However, if tests reveal that the cancer is making progress, then the doctor may recommend you to start prostate cancer treatment like radiation or surgery. The doctor may recommend any of these treatments for prostate cancer as well as the risks and benefits each entails.

Treatment for Prostate Cancer

* Watchful Waiting – is also referred to as active surveillance. This involves observing the progress of the tumor without any treatment given. This is usually recommended for tumor that is not causing any symptoms, localized to only a small part of prostate, and grows slowly. It is also recommended for men in advanced age especially those with other preexisting health condition in which starting any cancer treatment is more difficult. Oftentimes, the doctor examines the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) through blood test, examine biopsy tissue as well as subject you to a direct rectal exam. The risk of this treatment option, however, is that the tumor may grow in between round-up checkups, and then eventually spread, hence, making treatment more difficult.

* Hormone Therapy – this treatment method involves decreasing to completely stopping the body’s production of androgens, a male hormone testosterone, which helps cancer cells to grow. Stopping the production of testosterone will eventually kill cancer cells and growth of new tumors will slow down. Oftentimes, hormone therapy is combined with other treatments for prostate cancer. Acute prostate cancer patients are treated using hormone treatment to reduce the tumor and slow down its growth. Besides, it is also used in early-stage cancer to shrink the growth prior to radiation therapy and make it more successful. In other cases, it is also used following the radiation therapy or surgery to decelerate the development of the remaining cancer cells. However, it has side effects such as weight gain, hot flashes, erectile dysfunction and decreased sex drive. Continuous hormone treatment increases the chances of cardiovascular problems and heart attack.

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* Radiation Therapy – this treatment procedure has two types- the brachytherapy and external beam radiation. In brachytherapy, radioactive seeds are implanted into the prostate which provides a measure of radiation. Discomfort may be felt afterwards. Meanwhile, in external beam radiation treatment, high-capacity energy beams are directed into the prostate. This must be done five times a week for up to eight weeks. Some patients find this treatment procedure as time-consuming but side effects are somewhat milder compared to brachytherapy. Results are similar with both radiation therapies, while common side effects include frequent, urgent and painful urination, erectile dysfunction, loose stools and painful bowel movement.

* Radical prostatectomy – this treatment for prostate cancer involves removing the entire prostate gland as well as the lymph nodes close to it through surgery. It can be delivered in various ways such as retropubic surgery, perineal surgery, laparoscopic prostatectomy and the use of a robot.

In retropubic surgery, the entire prostate gland is removed through incision in the lower abdomen where nerve damage is less likely to happen. While in perineal surgery, an incision is made in the middle of the scrotum and anus and promises quicker recovery. But taking out the surrounding lymph nodes is difficult and nerve damage could happen. Laparoscopic surgery is done by inserting a laparoscope- a slim tube surgical tool with a small camera at the end that sends off pictures thus helping surgeons see what is inside the body. Some hospitals even use a robot controlled by the surgeon in assisting the surgery. Radical prostatectomy promises quicker recovery but also carries some risk such as impotence and uncontrollable bladder.

Prostate Cancer Pictures, Images

Here are the pictures, images of prostate cancer and how the prostate is affected due to the cancer, which is second only to lung cancer in men.

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Remember that treatment for prostate cancer must be considered individually, so it is best to discuss with your physician the kind of prostate cancer treatment most suitable for your case. Know and understand the benefits and risks associated with each treatment procedure.

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