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Current data reveals that more than 3 million men in the United States have been positively diagnosed with prostate cancer. The rate of diagnosis is 119.8 men for every 100,000 in the population, annually. The death rate is 20.1 for every 100,000 men diagnosed with the disease. Prostate cancer causes 4.4% of the deaths associated with all types of cancer; hence, it is one of the cancer types that have been adequately contained through preventive measures and management approaches (NIH, 2017).
One of the risk factors associated with prostate cancer is age. Men above 50 are at a higher risk of developing prostate cancer because more than 65% of the diagnosed cases involve men past this age. Studies have also shown that there are genetic factors associated with the disorder, which implies that individuals with close relatives that have been diagnosed with the disease are at a high risk of developing prostate cancer (Lynch et al., 2016).
Prostate cancer is commonly diagnosed after the detection of adenocarcinoma in the samples collected by a pathologist. The pathologist views a sample collected from the prostate and they grade them based on their resemblance to the prostate tissue. This is the Gleason score, which reveals the stage and type of cancer detected from the sample. Cancer is likely to grow and spread at the rate highlighted by the score (ACS, 2017).
Signs and Symptoms
Common symptoms include pain while urinating, blood in semen, painful ejaculation, and numbness in the pelvic area and legs. Prostate cancer may also be manifested through the loss of bladder control, frequent urges to pass urine, and a significant reduction of the speed of the stream while urinating. Some patients also portray erectile dysfunction (Casanova-Salas et al., 2014).
Screening and Diagnosis
Screening mainly involves a physical examination of the prostate. A pathologist may also take a sample from the prostate, which is analyzed extensively for grouping and staging if there are cancerous cells detected during the biopsy (Heidenreich et al., 2014).
Grading and Staging
There are five grade groups and four stages associated with prostate cancer. The stages are derived from the Gleason score of the patient, and as the grade group goes higher, the stage of cancer development gets more severe. The biopsy process reveals through the Gleason score that the stage is categorized by the size of the tumor and its rate of spreading. In most cases, patients with a low Gleason score have a longer prognosis (ACS, 2017).
Prostate cancer is one of the types of cancer that have various treatment options. One such treatment involves the surgical removal of the tumor or the prostate to save the patient’s life. Radiation is also used to kill cancerous cells. Cryotherapy is another common option being used to treat patients with this type of cancer, and it involves the use of hormones to manage the disease (Cancer Genome Atlas Research Network, 2015). There is also a vaccine treatment available to men. It is more effective during the first stage of the disease; hence, men are advised to screen for prostate cancer, especially when they approach the high-risk age (Cormie et al., 2015).
The prognosis for prostate cancer is dependent on the grade group and stage of development (Klotz et al., 2014). Patients who detect the disorder at its early stage have a higher chance of surviving, whereas patients at the late stage of the disease may have a very short prognosis.
ACS. (2017). Understanding your pathology report: Prostate Cancer. Web.
Cancer Genome Atlas Research Network. (2015). The molecular taxonomy of primary prostate cancer. Cell, 163(4), 1011-1025.
Casanova-Salas, I., Rubio-Briones, J., Calatrava, A., Mancarella, C., Masiá, E., Casanova, J.,… Domínguez-Escrig, J. (2014). Identification of miR-187 and miR-182 as biomarkers of early diagnosis and prognosis in patients with prostate cancer treated with radical prostatectomy. The Journal of Urology, 192(1), 252-259.
Cormie, P., Galvão, D. A., Spry, N., Joseph, D., Chee, R., Taaffe, D. R.,… Newton, R. U. (2015). Can supervised exercise prevent treatment toxicity in patients with prostate cancer initiating androgen‐deprivation therapy: A randomised controlled trial. BJU International, 115(2), 256-266.
Heidenreich, A., Bastian, P. J., Bellmunt, J., Bolla, M., Joniau, S., van der Kwast, T.,… Mottet, N. (2014). EAU guidelines on prostate cancer. Part 1: Screening, diagnosis, and local treatment with curative intent—Update 2013. European Urology, 65(1), 124-137.
Klotz, L., Vesprini, D., Sethukavalan, P., Jethava, V., Zhang, L., Jain, S.,… Loblaw, A. (2014). Long-term follow-up of a large active surveillance cohort of patients with prostate cancer. Journal of Clinical Oncology, 33(3), 272-277.
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Lynch, H. T., Kosoko‐Lasaki, O., Leslie, S. W., Rendell, M., Shaw, T., Snyder, C.,… Moul, J. W. (2016). Screening for familial and hereditary prostate cancer. International Journal of Cancer, 138(11), 2579-2591.
NIH. (2017). Cancer stat facts: Prostate Cancer. Retrieved from https://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/prost.html