Prostate Health – Treatment of Prostate Cancer
The Prostate is a prominent component of the male reproductive system. As you become older, changes occurring within your prostate can lead to the development of serious health problems.
It is therefore crucial that you are aware of what treatment options are available to you.
The primary issue in relation to treatment for prostate ill health is to determine whether the cancer is actually contained within the prostate, or whether it has in fact spread to other parts of the body.
Prostate cancer can be one of the following:
Localised – – here it affects only the prostate
Locally advanced – here it will have spread beyond the prostate to some of the surrounding areas, but not to other organs.
Advanced – here it has spread to nearby organs e.g the bladder. Often, it will have spread to distant sites such as the bones or the lymph system.
In terms of treatment options include the following:
– Watchful waiting’ – the cancer state is actively monitored and treatments utilised as and when they become necessary. It is important to note that prostate cancer can in fact be extremely slow growing.
– Surgery – Here, the prostate is removed
– External beam radiotherapy- radiation is actively directed at the prostate to attempt to kill the cancerous cells.
– Bracytherapy – This is essentially another form of radiotherapy, where radioactive `seeds` are implanted directly into the prostate with the aim of delivering a concentrated dose of radiation to kill the cancerous cells.
In addition, locally or advanced prostate cancer can be treated by the use of hormone therapy. This can either be on its own or in conjunction with another treatment.
Basically, hormone therapy reduces the amount of testosterone in the body to attempt to slow down or preferably stop the growth of the cancer cells.
There is actually no organised screening program for prostate cancer, but men who would like to can visit their doctor and request a prostate specific antigen test (PSA) this will provide information about the current health of the prostate. The PSA is a blood test and can only provide an indication as to whether cancer is likely to be present.
Whatever your decision, if at all worried about the health of your prostate you should seek a consultation with your doctor, and avail yourself of high quality well informed advice. Do not let this matter address make sure you have any questions or concerns answered as soon as possible.
There is so much more information and advice available – this article only scratches at the surface. So do make use of well informed sources to maximize your possibility of a successful outcome