Prostate Health Month

September 3, 2021

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Photo by RODNAE Productions on Pexels

Let’s talk about aging. Our bodies— as hardy and as well-designed as they might be— still age, and aging can take form in many parts of our bodies. Visually we can see aging in our largest organ, our skin, and in other areas such as our hair or in our bones. However, there are many body parts that age without us being any the wiser. For men, the prostate is an important organ within the reproductive system that shows its age in quite startling ways, but don’t worry. There are several things you can do to keep yourself living happy and healthy.

Don’t Hate Your Prostate

The male prostate can be a touchy subject; however, it is important to get involved in prostate health as you reach the age of 65, which is around the time that most men’s prostates may develop issues such as prostate cancer. Located just below the bladder and in front of the rectum, the prostate is about the size of a walnut and surrounds parts of the urethra (the tube that empties urine from the bladder). The prostate gland produces fluid that makes up part of semen.

This reproductive organ commonly develops prostate cancer, which is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in men with almost 250,000 diagnosed with prostate cancer each year in the U.S and nearly 33,000 deaths each year. Prostate cancer often has no early symptoms; however, symptoms can include impotency, loss of bladder control, and bowel problems should the cancer advance into later stages.

Know the State

Screening for prostate cancer can be key in maintaining good health and is likely to detect any cancers before it spreads to other places in the body. Most prostate cancers grow slowly and don’t cause any health problems therefore many can easily be treated with early detection. Commonly used methods to screen for prostate cancer are the prostate specific antigen (PSA) test and the digital rectal examination.

A PSA is a type of blood test that measures the amount of PSA substances in your blood which are produced by the prostate. The PSA level in your blood may be high if you have prostate cancer and for many other reasons, such as having an enlarged prostate, a prostate infection, or if you are taking certain medications. The digital rectal examination is when a health care provider inserts a gloved, lubricated finder into a man’s rectum to feel the prostate for anything abnormal such as cancer.

It’s Never Too Late

Should you be diagnosed with prostate cancer, there is light at the end of the tunnel. As with most cancers, early detection is key in treating prostate cancer before it can cause life threatening illness. Therapies such as biopsy, radiation therapy, and active surveillance can be effective in treating prostate cancer to prevent further health complications. However, due to its slow-growing nature not all prostate cancers require drastic procedures. Often unnecessary and unneeded treatment can have serious side effects, so it’s important to get involved in the conversation with your doctor to know which path is best for you.

What is most important to stay in-the-know on your prostate health so that you can keep living life to its fullest. If you’re looking for more health tips to keep your prostate from making you prostrate you can check out these helpful links below: