Prostate Cancer Treatment
What is prostate cancer?
The prostate gland is present in males that produce seminal fluid required to nourish and transport sperm. Prostate cancer is the unusual extension of cells in the prostate. It is one of the most common cancer in men and is usually observed in men above 40 years. There are many types of prostate cancers. Some of them do not cause any harm. Some prostate cancers grow slowly and may not require treatment but another type of prostate cancer spread quickly and required serious attention.
What are the symptoms of prostate cancer?
In earlier stage prostate cancer does not cause any serious symptoms but with the age, it shows symptoms like increased frequency of urination at night, urgency, poor urinary stream, sense of incomplete passing of urine.
More advanced prostate cancer may cause symptoms such as:
- Trouble urinating
- Decreased force in the stream of urine
- Blood in the urine
- Blood in the semen
- Bone pain
- Losing weight without trying
- Erectile dysfunction
What are the risk factors of prostate cancer?
Risk factors associated with prostate cancer are:
- Older age: Risk increases with age. Usually, people with an age of more than 40 years are at greater risk.
- Family history. If a person has a family history of prostate cancer, then he is at increased risk of prostate cancer. If a blood relative, such as a parent, sibling, or child, has been diagnosed with prostate cancer, then the risk is more.
- Obesity. Obese people are at more risk of prostate cancer as in obese people cancer is more likely to be more aggressive and more likely to return after initial treatment.
What are treatment options available for prostate cancer?
Prostate cancer treatment depends upon several circumstances such as – type and stage of cancer, possible side effects, and the patient’s preferences and overall health. Sometimes mixed treatment plan is needed for the treatment.
Surgery: Surgery is the most common option for prostate cancer. Radical prostatectomy is a process of removing the entire prostate gland and is used for the treatment of prostate cancer that has not spread. For advanced prostate cancer, another surgical method may be chosen, such as removal of lymph nodes, which are initial landing spots for the spread of prostate cancer.
Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy is chosen based on several factors such as:
- What other treatment options or clinical trials are available.
- How well chemotherapy is likely to be tolerated.
- What prior therapies you have received.
The goal of chemotherapy is to prevent cancer from spreading in other areas. Radiation may be needed before chemotherapy to relieve pain quickly.
Radiation therapy: Radiation therapy is suggest in men with cancer that has penetrated through the prostate capsule (layer of connective tissue around the prostate) and/or who have positive margins after surgery.
Hormone therapy: Hormone therapy is recommended for prostate cancer spread to the lymph node. It helps the patient to live longer.
Several treatment options are available for patients presenting in advanced stages of cancer such as Androgen deprivation therapy, Systemic chemotherapy, and many newer drugs which can keep the disease under control as well as considerably enhance the quality of life.