4 Early Signs that may lead to Prostate Cancer
Although we are at the end of Men’s Health Awareness Month, it is still very important to be aware of the risk factors to prostate cancer. After skin cancer, prostate cancer is the second most common kind of cancer in American men. It doesn’t have many symptoms, making it difficult to treat since by the time men learn they have it the cancer has already spread. There is good news however; there are a few things to look for in your everyday patters. If you or a loved one in your life notices any of these signs it is best to always be safe than sorry and go to your doctor for a checkup as soon as possible. There are only a few symptoms listed here to offer awareness, but for the full list of 10 symptoms, visit caring.com by clicking HERE.
1.) Difficulty urinating: This could include feeling like you have to go and then nothing comes out, stopping mid-stream, or having to go more often. There may be difficulty stopping or the feeling you still have to go even when you’re done. Because the prostate gland surrounds the urethra even a very small tumor can interfere with urination. It is normal that with aging the prostate gland enlarges which can cause similar problems, but only your doctor will be able to tell the difference.
2.) Pain while urinating: This is caused by pressure from the tumor pressing on the urethra, however, this is also a symptom of infection of the prostate – prostatitis – and of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) which is non-cancerous enlargement of the gland.
3.) Chronic constipation and other intestinal issues: The prostate gland is located below the bladder and in front of the rectum, so a tumor in this location can interfere with digestive functions dramatically. This is a foggy area, however; chronic constipation can contribute to an enlarged prostate by putting pressure on the gland but it also could work the other way around. Chronic constipation and intestinal problems can also be an early indicator of colon cancer. So for your safety, if you’re suffering from constipation or intestinal symptoms that don’t go away when you modify your diet, talk to your doctor. You can learn about some great foods that are easy on your liver and your digestive system in our Love your Liver blog.
4.) If you’re over 50 and have risk factors: Since there are most often no symptoms for early prostate cancer, men who are at risk should speak to their doctors about prostate cancer and take regular exams whether they notice anything unnatural happening or not. Family history – such as a father with prostate cancer – being overweight, eating a high-fat diet, being of African American descent, and smoking all increase your risk.
Also, if the women in your family have a history of breast cancer, you may carry genes that increase your prostate cancer risk. Remember: These are not all the risk to look out for, learn more and ask your doctor any more questions you may have. Take your health serious!