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Men urged to have life-saving checks

03 March 2017

In an effort to cut the number of lives a year lost to prostate cancer, men over the age of 50 are being urged to take a test as soon as possible, to mark the start of prostate cancer awareness month.

Over 46,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer every year, with this form being the most common male cancer. Spire Washington Hospital’s Consultant Urologist, Professor Damian Greene, wants to see a rise in the number of men going for examinations that could save their lives.

He explained: “The most common test usually involves an examination whereby the doctor will feel inside the man’s back passage – it’s as simple as that. It’s relatively painless and takes less than a minute.

“It may seem a little unpleasant but it is common practice for the doctor and could save your life.” 

The causes of prostate cancer, which is responsible for more than 10,000 UK deaths each year, are largely unknown but what is certain is that chances of developing it are increased in men over 50 years of age. Those whose father or brother has been affected by prostate cancer are also at higher risk of being affected themselves.

Women are also being asked to encourage conversation with the men in their lives as part of prostate cancer awareness month.

Mr Greene explained: “Many men are embarrassed by the thought of the test so put it off. If someone has a loved one over the age of 50 who they know hasn’t been tested, prostate cancer awareness month is a good way to bring the subject up and help take away the embarrassment factor.

“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.”

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