Other than skin cancer, prostate cancer is the most common cancer among American men and the second leading cause of cancer deaths in men. Here are some things you need to know about prostate cancer:
As a rule, the higher the PSA (prostate-specific antigen) level in the blood, the more likely a prostate problem is present. However, the change from your baseline matters as well!
We always need to pay attention to CHANGES in the PSA numbers. A study found out that the annual percent changes in PSA more accurately predicted the presence of aggressive prostate cancer when compared to single measurements of PSA alone. This study had nearly 220,000 men ages 45 and older over a 10-year period had at least one PSA measurement and no previous diagnosis of prostate cancer.
Hormone imbalance may play a role in prostate cancer. Estrogen is a hormone that stimulates cell division (mainly in the breast, uterus, and prostate gland, and in the pituitary gland). Being exposed to increased amounts of estrogen-like chemicals in the environment as a result of industrial pollution may lead to prostate cancer development.
When visceral fat goes up, you get a 5 to 6-fold increased risk of prostate cancer.
Industrial seed oils like canola oil may play a role. High intake of omega-6 PUFAs is implicated in cancer of the breast, colon, and, possibly, prostate. Omega-3 PUFAs and monounsaturated fatty acids such as oleic acid (omega-9) are protective. There is also an increase in incidence and death from prostate cancer over the last 30 years are associated with increased consumption of seed oils, which prepare the ground for cancer.
Residential sunlight exposure is associated with a decreased risk of prostate cancer - up to 50% less risk in states with high solar radiation.
Bioidentical hormones may help. Long-term testosterone treatment reduces cardiovascular risk and mortality and reduces prostate cancer risk.
If you have cancer of your colon or liver, breast, or prostate, we can use a nuclear medicine imaging technique called PET (positron emission tomography) to know if your cancer has spread to any other part of the body. The process involves radioactively tagged glucose that is injected into the body and then that glucose is selectively picked up by various cells in the body. We know that cancer cells love to eat glucose, so they actively pick up the tagged glucose. The highlighted nests of radioactive glucose, therefore, indicate areas of the strongest growth of cancer cells.
Prostate cancer regularly has no symptoms in its early stages, and when they do occur, you’ll often find men have an enlarged prostate. If you find that you or your partner is experiencing urinary issues or has trouble passing urine at all, we encourage you to speak to a healthcare provider. The most common symptoms of prostate cancer include a dull pain in the pelvic region, regular urinating, pain during urination, or blood in their urine. In addition, men may experience pain when ejaculating or pain in the lower back and hips. Weight loss and a loss of appetite can also be associated with prostate cancer. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, we encourage you to speak to a medical professional. There's a lot we can do to treat prostate cancer with prevention and treatment. You can make an appointment with us at (949) 680-1880.
Your Partner in Health, Dr. Leigh Erin Connealy