Prostate cancer has historically been perceived as somewhat of an “old man’s disease.” For decades, statistics did nothing to disprove this theory; supporting it with data suggesting that prostate cancer may more likely occur after the age of 65. A newer study is countering previous statistics.
In a Comprehensive Cancer Study conducted by researchers at the University of Michigan, it was discovered that the past two decades had brought a six-fold increase in the number of younger men being diagnosed with prostate cancer. The term “younger” in this instance refers to men under the age of 55. Because of this shift in statistical information, and new findings in the area of prostate cancer, all men with a family history of this disease are encouraged to consult with their physician about genetic markers and how to monitor prostate health beginning at a younger age.
Prostate cancer sits at #2 as the most common type of cancer to affect men and is said to be the most common non-skin cancer in our country. Currently, a new case of prostate cancer is diagnosed every 3.3 minutes. These are not statistics that should create unnecessary stress; they are numbers that should make you sit up and take note. Although there is little in the way of fully-conclusive evidence, experts have found some interesting details about prostate cancer cases that men can use to their advantage.
Is Prevention Possible?
Several of the risk factors for prostate cancer cannot be altered. This is still viewed as a highly-genetic disease, so family history is a prime matter of importance. For men with a family history, there may be a recommendation that prostate screenings begin earlier and occur more frequently than men without that particular risk factor. In addition to early detection and treatment, we also benefit from looking at the potential for prevention.
One of the interesting points discovered in research is that men in rural areas of China have only a 2% risk of developing prostate cancer. In the United States, that risk is elevated to 17%. Furthermore, if a man from rural China were to be transplanted in the States, his risk would then increase to that 17%. This tells us that diet and location are both involved in the risk for this disease.
Some triggers that men are encouraged to avoid or limit include high calcium intake, dietary intake of fat, alcohol, and red meat, sedentary lifestyle habits, and exposure to pesticides.
The bottom line on prostate cancer is that we do not yet have a foolproof way to prevent disease. Men need to partner with their doctor to obtain screenings, early diagnosis, and proper treatment for this condition. To schedule a consultation in our Plano office, call (972) 403-5425.This entry was posted in Prostate Cancer. Bookmark the permalink.
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