Prostate cancer is cancer that occurs in a man’s prostate — a small walnut-shaped gland that produces the seminal fluid that nourishes and transports sperm. Prostate cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in men. Prostate cancer usually grows slowly and initially remains confined to the prostate gland, where it may not cause serious harm. While some types of prostate cancer grow slowly and may need minimal or no treatment, other types are aggressive and can spread quickly. Prostate cancer that is detected early — when it’s still confined to the prostate gland — has a better chance of successful treatment.
Prostate cancer may not cause signs or symptoms in its early stages. Prostate cancer that is more advanced may cause signs and symptoms such as:
Decreased force in the stream of urine
Blood in the urine
Blood in the semen
General pain in the lower back, hips or thighs
Discomfort in the pelvic area
When to see a doctor
Make an appointment with your doctor if you have any signs or symptoms that worry you.
There is debate regarding the risks and benefits of screening for prostate cancer, and medical organizations differ on their recommendations. Discuss prostate cancer screening with your doctor. Together, you can decide what’s best for you.