Prostate cancer kills one man every hour in the UK, with more than 35,000 new cases diagnosed every year. Prostate cancer mainly attacks older men, with 95% of all patients between the ages of 45 and 80.
“We know that men are notoriously bad at discussing health matters,” says Mr Kieran Jefferson, Consultant Urological Surgeon and expert in urological cancers, “I cannot stress enough how important it is that anyone with concerns get themselves checked out as soon as they can. Having one or more of the symptoms of these conditions does not mean that cancer is necessarily the cause; however, it is crucial that cancer or other conditions are ruled out quickly. I would therefore urge men not to leave it too late as early diagnosis may make a difference to the success of their treatment and overall recovery.
Prostate cancer is difficult to detect and requires investigation using a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test. Over half of all prostate cancer cases are detected before symptoms have developed using the PSA test, which is offered to men over 50 who have particular concerns, following consultation with their GP. Symptoms can include passing urine more frequently, waking from sleep to pass urine, having to rush to the toilet urgently for fear of an accident, weak stream with difficulty starting and stopping and dribbling of urine after going to the toilet. It is important to note however that most men with these symptoms do not have prostate cancer and should see their GP to rule out the disease. Mr Jefferson continues, “Prostate cancer is often a relatively slow growing cancer and older men may not require treatment. Younger men or those with more aggressive forms can be treated effectively with surgery, radiotherapy or hormone treatment. “
“The good news is that if the cancer is caught and treated early on, patients will have the same life expectancy as everyone else.”
In Coventry and Rugby approximately 250 new patients are diagnosed with prostate cancer every year.
To improve diagnosis and treatment, UHCW has invested in a consultant-delivered one-stop prostate clinic, where patients with suspected prostate cancer will be seen at their first attendance by a consultant who is an expert in the management of prostate cancer and, in most cases, will have a biopsy the same day to clarify the diagnosis.
Prostate Cancer Facts
- Prostate cancer has overtaken lung cancer to become the most common cancer in men.
- About 10,000 men die from prostate cancer every year in the UK. This works out as more than one man every hour.
- The majority of men with prostate cancer are aged over 60 years. Although this cancer can also occur in younger individuals, it is very rare under the age of 50.
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Picture caption: Consultant Urologist Kieran Jefferson.