It's that time of year again. November is upon us and Men around the world are growing mustaches to raise money and awareness for Prostate Cancer. Since my mustache growing abilities are sub-par to say the least, I've decided to write a series of blog posts about Prostate Cancer culminating in a final post where I speak of my experience in getting a PSA blood test and digital rectal exam.
First of all, it's important to know the risk factors for Prostate Cancer. There are modifiable and non-modifiable risk factors. Unfortunately, we can't choose our parents or age.
As men get older, your chance of developing Prostate Cancer. In fact, at age 50 years there is a 30% incidence or Prostate Cancer, 35% at 60 years, and 40% at 70 years. So clearly, getting regularly tested gets more crucial as we age. The Canadian Cancer Society recommends getting screened yearly after the age of 50. But, knowing the incidence rate at age 50 stated above, it's important to be aware of symptoms to watch for before the age where regular testing should start (I will review these symptoms in tomorrow's blog). Like many chronic diseases, heredity plays a factor. If a family member has been diagnosed with Prostate Cancer, you are in a higher risk group.
Lucky for us, there are modifiable risk-factors as well. In other words, there are things we can do to prevent Prostate Cancer (and other cancers as well). Eating a balanced diet with lots of fruits and vegetables while staying active will reduce your risk for many problems, including Prostate Cancer.
Now that we've covered the risk factors, tomorrow I will write about things like: what is a Prostate? What does it do? What are the symptoms of Prostate Enlargement/Cancer? I hope you find this series helpful, and if you have any further questions or concerns please contact me.
Dr. Jeff Marshall BScKin, DC
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