November is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month and men should consider getting screened for prostate cancer with a digital rectal examination (DRE) and prostate specific antigen (PSA) blood test. The DRE Involves a physician inserting a gloved, lubricated finger into the rectum to palpate, or feel, any abnormalities in the prostate. The American Cancer Society (ACS) recommends men commence prostate cancer screening at age 50, while men at high risk (African-American, positive family history) should be considered at age 40 or 45. According to the ACS, prostate cancer is the most common nonskin cancer among men in the United States. It occurs mostly among men aged 65 or older (60-percent).
Ten treatments for prostate cancer are…
Watchful waiting, also referred to as observation, is based on the premise that some men will not benefit from aggressive treatment of their prostate cancer. The treatment option is usually agreed upon shortly after the diagnosis of prostate cancer. Men with prostate cancer who choose this option for treatment will undergo less intensive follow-up of their cancer. It usually translates into fewer physician visits and tests such as DREs, PSAs, MRI or CT scans, and prostate ultrasounds with or without biopsies.
Men choosing watchful waiting usually have clinically localized, or low-risk, disease and a life expectancy of less than 10-years. In other words, the prostate cancer is confined within the prostate and these men will probably die from other diseases before prostate cancer. The majority of prostate cancers grow slowly. Men undergoing watchful waiting forego curative treatment, but may receive treatment for bothersome symptoms related to the advancement or spread (metastasis) of prostate cancer.