News

14-11-2016

One of the Movember Foundation's main areas of research and education.

Prostate Cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australian men and will be diagnosed in 1 in 7 men before the age of 75 years. It is estimated that 18,138 new cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed in 2016. It is recommended that each man discusses his situation with his doctor to decide if testing and chose the best course of action

Risk Factors for developing the cancer include:

 

  • Age, increasing with age
  • Family history, a man with a father or brother who has developed prostate cancer is twice as likely to develop the disease
  • Ethnicity, Afro-Carribean and black African have increased rates

Symptoms do not always occur, many cases are detected during blood tests for the PSA ( Prostate specific Antigen, a protein in the blood that is produced by the prostate cells)  but may include:

 

  • A need to urinate more frequently, difficulty starting or holding urine or weak flow
  • Painful or burning urination
  • Blood in urine or ejaculation

The Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia has developed national guidelines on PSA testing and early management of test-detected prostate cancer, these guidelines have also been approved by the National Health and Research Council in January 2016. The Guidelines follow many years of controversy surrounding the PSA testing for men, they do not recommend a screening program for all men but a summary of the main points is as follows:

 

  • Rectal examination is not recommended as a routine addition to PSA testing by the general Practitioner. On referral to a Urologist or other Specialist an examination remains an important assessment procedure prior to biopsy.
  • Before undertaking a PSA blood test, men should discuss the benefits and harms of testing
  • Men who are average risk of prostate cancer, who have been informed of the benefits and harms of testing, and who wish to undergo regular testing should be offered PSA testing every 2 years from the age of 50 to 69 years. Further investigation should be undertaken if the total PSA concentration is greater than 3ng/mL.
  • Men aged 70 years or older who have been advised of the benefits and harms of testing, who wish to start or continue regular testing should be advised that the harms of testing may be greater than the benefits for men of their age
  • Men who have a father or brother who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer have a 2.5 - 3 times higher than average risk of developing the disease. Such men who have been advised of the benefits and harms of testing and who decide to undergo regular testing for prostate cancer should be offered PSA testing every 2 years from the age of 45 to 69 years of age. Men with both father and brothers who have developed prostate cancer should be offered PSA testing every 2 years from the age of 40 years.

See movember.com for further information regarding the benefits and harms of testing and further links for more details regarding prostate cancer diagnosis, management and treatments if required

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