Prostate cancer is a form of cancer that originates in the gland cells of the prostate. The prostate gland is found in only men. Prostate cancer is a common occurrence in men. The definite cause of this cancer is not known yet. But various studies have confirmed that family history, old age, and obesity can lead to this cancer. Symptoms include blood during urination, painful urination, blood in the semen, burning sensation while urinating, frequent urination, interrupted urine flow, and enlarged prostate.
Did you know 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime? About 6 cases in 10 are diagnosed in men who are 65 or older, and it is rare in men under 40. The average age of men at diagnosis is about 66.
It is important for you to be aware of this problem of prostate cancer which will help you deal with it. One may have to undergo surgery or radiotherapy in the early stages and combination treatments like hormone therapy, radiation therapy, immunotherapy, and bisphosphonate therapy in advanced stages.
We at Medicircle are conducting the Prostate Cancer Awareness Series to be aware of this problem of prostate cancer which will help you deal with it.
Dr. Ketan Vartak is a practicing urology consultant for the last 25 years in Pune. He is a Founder of Pramodini urology foundation, which is a state-of-the-art urology hospital with all modern lasers and machinery.
He is also a Professor of urology at Bharati hospital, Pune. He is a specialist and pioneer in Thulium laser enucleation of the prostate in India. He demonstrated many laser surgeries in various conferences.
Low immunity for prostate cancer patients
Dr. Ketan Vartak says, “Any type of cancer causes low immunity. There are two types of cancer-
Treatable cancer - Local and confined to prostrate or one organ can be treated and eliminated. This can help in restoring normal life and does not cause any immunity problems. There are no complications related to cancer.
Non- treatable metastatic cancer- This cancer spreads from the prostate to other organs like bones or lungs and causes lower immunity with complications. Cancer harms the body in such cases. Also, the treatment related to chemotherapy or immunotherapy can cause lower immunity. Such patients need extra care and attention.
Symptoms of prostate cancer
Dr. Ketan Vartak informs, “Cancer of prostate or BEP ( Benign Enlargement of Prostate) have similar symptoms-
The location of the prostate gland is such that it compresses the neck of the urinary bladder and urethra which affects urinary function and pressure. BEP ( Benign Enlargement of Prostate) is due to an age-related phenomenon that may be considered normal to some extent. However, if it is benign, it does not cause any problem but in the case of cancerous enlargement, it will cause complications.
The symptoms of prostate enlargement come from the compression of the urethra. However, if there is metastasis cancer of the bone, spine, or other organs, there are many other signs and symptoms like -
Cough Pain in body Nerve pain Weakness Weight loss
However, there are no such signs and symptoms for prostate cancer which is confined to the prostate. Unfortunately, Cancer of the prostate is not detected early which causes metastasis and complications. Generally in India, people come to know about cancer after metastasis.”
Warning signals for prostate cancer
Dr. Ketan Vartak informs, “Many people with prostate cancer and cancer generally cause complications. The warning signals are-
Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) Diagnostic test - is an indication for prostate problems
Males above the age of 45years with a PSA of more than 4
Sonography at the age of 45 - 50 years
Follow routine protocol.”
Treatment of prostate cancer
Dr. Ketan Vartak informs, “Like all cancer, prostate cancer is also treatable. Other cancers have severe intensity. Prostate cancer is slow-growing cancer as compared to other cancers.
The stage of cancer is also important. If cancer is confined to the prostate then removal and surgery is possible. The success rate is 85% in such cases. However, for metastatic cancer, immunotherapy is a solution. Lowering testosterone hormonal levels can help.”
A myth about prostate cancer
Dr. Ketan Vartak informs, “Prostate cancer is not contagious. There is no infectivity through blood or air from one person to another. Even in the case of metastatic cancer, it is not contagious. Give them more sympathy and care with extra attention.”
(Edited by Dr.Rati Parwani)