1. What is prostate cancer?
Prostate cancer is a cancer which affects a small walnut shaped gland called as prostate found only in men. This gland produces a fluid that enriches the semen. Prostate cancer is common in old aged men.
2. What are the symptoms associated with prostate cancer?
In the initial stages, prostate cancer may not be associated with any symptoms. Advanced cases can cause signs and symptoms like
- Blood in semen
- Frequent urination, nocturia (urination at night), dysuria (painful urination)
- Painful erection / ejaculation
In cases of metastasis, symptoms may include bone pain, tingling and numbness, urinary and fecal incontinence.
3. What causes prostate cancer?
The exact cause of prostate cancer is not known. Cancer develops due to a mutation in the DNA of cells leading to abnormal and uncontrolled growth of cells, which further grow to form a tumour and may spread to other body parts. Risk factors include old age, family history, genetic factors and obesity. Exposure to toxins is thought to be another possible cause.
4. Who are at a high risk to get prostate cancer?
As genetics play a strong role in prostate cancer, individuals having family history of cancer are at a high risk of prostate cancer. Risk of prostate cancer also increases with age and hence, it is more common in old men. Other risk factors include obesity, smoking and alcoholism.
5. What are the complications of prostate cancer?
Complications of prostate cancer are seen due to its large size and metastasis. It may spread to the urinary bladder, bones and nervous system leading to bone pain and tingling/numbness. It can cause dribbling of urine and erectile dysfunction. It can further spread to other organs like brain, cardiovascualar system, and endocrine system too leading to many symtoms and death.