10 March 2017
Don’t die of embarrassment! That is the message to men in the UK to mark Prostate Cancer Awareness Month this month.
It is the UK’s biggest male cancer killer, claiming 10,000 lives a year, but it seems that many men are still putting off a visit to their doctors for a very quick test that can tell them if they are in the clear or if they need treatment.
And it is this delay that is responsible for many prostate cancer deaths according to Consultant Urologist, Simon Bott.
Now Simon Bott and Neil Barber at Urology Partners, Consultants who practise at Spire Clare Park Hospital in Farnham, are urging everyone to bring the subject into the open in order to encourage men to ‘take the test’.
“There is a simple blood test we can do now that tells us whether a man is at risk of having prostate cancer. It is very likely this will be normal, but if it is abnormal we can arrange further tests to see whether cancer is present. Techniques to find prostate cancer have come on leaps and bounds in the last few years – they are now more accurate and less uncomfortable for the patient.
“Many men are embarrassed by health problems, particularly when they are related to their nether regions!. I want people to use Awareness Month to discuss prostate cancer and help men overcome their reluctance to get themselves tested” he said.
The causes of prostate cancer are largely unknown but what is certain is that chances of developing it increase in men over 50 years of age. Men whose father or brother has been affected by prostate cancer are also at higher risk of being affected themselves.
“Over the last few years we have been able to see much more accurately abnormal areas within the prostate using MRI scans. This enables us to perform targeted biopsies to see what’s going on in the prostate and even targeted treatments if necessary, which drastically reduces the chances of side effects of some of the older treatments. MRI scans also enable us to reassure many men that they don’t need any further investigations, such as a biopsy”
“The good news is that, if spotted in time, prostate cancer is very treatable with latest figures showing that 84% of those treated live for 10 years or more after treatment,” Simon Bott added.
Prostate Cancer Facts
- Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men.
- Over 44,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer every year – that's more than 120 men every day.
- Every hour one man dies from prostate cancer – that's more than 10,500 men every year.
- 1 in 8 men will get prostate cancer in their lifetime.
- Over 330,000 men are living with and after prostate cancer.