PROSTATE cancer is the most common cancer to affect British men. Spotting the early signs could be a matter of life of death. But if the cancer has spread, what are the six signs to look out for?
Prostate cancer symptoms don’t usually appear until the cancer has grown large enough to put pressure on the tube which carries urine from the bladder out of the penis, known as the urethra. There are six warning signs felt by the body indicating the cancer is no longer in the early stages and has in fact begun to spread.
According to Mayo Clinic, if the cancer has spread to other parts of the body, people may experience:
- Painful urination
- Decreased force in the stream of urine
- Blood in the semen
- Bone pain
- Swelling in the legs
According to Prostate Cancer UK, other signs the cancer has spread may include:
High calcium levels (hypercalcaemia) symptoms can include tiredness, feeling and being sick and difficulty emptying the bowels
Low red blood cells levels (anaemia)
Metastatic spinal cord compression (MSCC)
Eating problems and weight loss
As Prostate Cancer UK explained, prostate cancer cells can move from the prostate to other parts of the body through the bloodstream
Or they can spread to the lymph nodes near the prostate and then travel through the lymph vessels to other parts of a person’s body.
“Lymph nodes and lymph vessels are part of your lymphatic system and are found throughout your body,” added the charity.
What causes prostate cancer
There is no clear cause of prostate cancer, but a number of things have been linked to an increased risk of the disease developing.
Age is one of the biggest risk factors, according to Cancer Research UK.
The charity explains: “Prostate cancer is more common in older men and is more common in men aged 75 to 97 years.
“One in six men in the UK will get prostate cancer at some point in their lives.”
Other risk factors include ethnicity, being overweight or having a history of prostate cancer within the family.
When to see a GP
You should see your GP if you have any of these symptoms, said the NHS.
“It’s much more likely to be prostate enlargement, but it’s important to rule out cancer.
“The outlook for prostate cancer is generally good because, unlike many other types of cancer, it usually progresses very slowly.
“Many men die with prostate cancer rather than as a result of having it.
“Prostate cancer therefore does not always need to be treated immediately.
“Sometimes, it may initially just be monitored and only treated if it gets worse.”
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