Prostate cancers start in the tissue of the prostate, a gland in the male reproductive system. Prostate cancer is usually a slow growing disease. According to Canadian Cancer Statistics 2011, prostate cancer remains the most common cancer diagnosed in men in Canada, with 25,500 cases expected in 2011. This accounts for over a quarter (27%) of new cancer cases in men.
All men over the age of 50 years should talk to their doctors about being tested for prostate cancer. Men who are at higher risk because of family history or men of African ancestry should discuss the need for testing at an earlier age.
There are two tests for prostate cancer:
If your tests suggest abnormalities in your prostate, your doctor may suggest more tests to rule out or confirm a diagnosis of cancer.
Men often do not experience any signs or symptoms of prostate cancer in its early stages. As the cancer develops, you may experience:
Many symptoms can be explained for reasons other than having cancer. You should see your doctor if any of these symptoms are prevalent and do not go away.
There is no single cause of prostate cancer, but some factors increase the risk of developing it:
Other possible risk factors (that scientists are now researching) include: