The month of November marks Prostate Cancer Awareness month. Each year, men and women around the world take place in fundraising events such as Movember to raise awareness for prostate cancer and men’s health in general.
After skin cancer, prostate cancer is the second most common cancer found in men living in Ireland. It is estimated that approximately 3,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year. There are a number of risk factors that can contribute towards a man’s chance of being diagnosed with prostate cancer during their lifetime. These are:
- Age: Your risk increases as you get older
- Family history: Men whose male relatives were diagnosed with prostate cancer at a young age have a higher risk
- Diet: Men who include a large amount of red meat, high fat dairy products and not enough green vegetables in their diet
Prostate cancer occurs when the normal cells in the prostate gland grow and form a mass of cells called a tumour. This can often be a slow growing cancer especially in older men. It affects not only the function of the prostate gland but also the function of the urinary tract. For individuals who suffer from prostate cancer, some may experience the following symptoms:
- Slow flow of urine
- Trouble starting or stopping the flow of urine
- Passing urine often especially during the night
- Pain when urinating
- Blood in the urine or semen
It is important to note that early onset of prostate cancer may not show these urinary symptoms so it is vital that you go get checked with your doctor if you have any concerns or feel that you fit in any of the risk factor categories above. If caught in its earliest stages, prostate cancer is 90% curable.
The month of November is a great chance to get out and support a very worthy cause to help educate men and their loved ones on the importance of getting regular health check ups. Join the Irish Cancer Society and get involved in Movember 2016 by either hosting an event, growing a moustache in aid of men’s health or take the Move Challenge.