Prostate cancer is a common form of cancer and among the leading causes of cancer-related deaths in men around the world. Early detection of prostate cancer is vital as it increases the chances of successful treatment.
Regular Checkups and Screenings
Prostate cancer is often asymptomatic in the early stages, making it difficult to detect. However, regular checkups and screenings can help with early detection. The American Cancer Society recommends that men should discuss the possibility of screening with their doctors at the age of 50, and younger if they have a family history of prostate cancer or other risk factors.
DRE & PSA Screening
There are several methods used for prostate cancer screening, including a digital rectal exam (DRE) and a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test. During a DRE, a physician checks the size, shape, and texture of the prostate gland by feeling it with their fingers through the rectum. A PSA test measures the level of PSA, a protein produced by the prostate gland, in the blood. High levels of PSA can indicate the presence of prostate cancer.
Early detection of prostate cancer is crucial as it increases the chance for successful treatment. Treatment options for prostate cancer include surgery, radiation therapy, hormone therapy, and chemotherapy. However, treatment options become limited once the cancer has spread to other parts of the body or becomes aggressive.
Benefit of early detection
Prolonging life expectancy is not the only benefit of early detection. Early detection also reduces some cancer treatment side effects, including impotence and incontinence. This occurs because early detection likely indicates the cancer is localized and hasn’t spread, so treatment can focus on the prostate gland alone.
Moreover, early detection of prostate cancer can give patients and their families valuable time to obtain information about the disease and make informed decisions about the best course of treatment. Early intervention also puts the patient in a better position to engage in a wide range of coping strategies and to take charge of mental and emotional health.
In conclusion, the importance of early detection of prostate cancer cannot be overstated. Regular screenings and checkups are critical in detecting prostate cancer before it becomes advanced(spreads to other parts of the body). Early detection offers a better chance for successful treatment, fewer side effects, and additional time for decision-making and coping strategies. Therefore, men should make prostate cancer screening a part of their regular healthcare routine.