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How a Healthy LifeStyle and Early Detection Will Help Prevent Prostate Cancer

The prostate is a gland present only in men. It is usually about three centimeters long and is located at the neck of the bladder, in front of the rectum. The prostate surrounds the urethra, which carries urine and sperm to the penis. Difficulty urinating and a frequent urge to do so are symptoms of an enlarged prostate.

While having an enlarged prostate does not necessarily indicate the presence of cancer, an individual experiencing these symptoms should see a physician for a screening; an enlarged prostate could indicate the presence of a cancerous tumor.

In the United States, prostate cancer is the second most common form of cancer found in men, the first being lung cancer. The death rate for prostate cancer has declined over the years, due to improvements in early detection and treatment of the disease. Early detection is the primary key in beating the disease.

Causes and Prevention

There are no known causes of prostate cancer; however, there is a strong correlation between age and the disease. Statistics have shown that the chances of contracting prostate cancer increases gradually after the age of forty. If the disease has appeared in one's family history, the chances of being diagnosed with the disease increase even more. Other possible causal factors include diets high in fat, sexually transmitted diseases, and exposure to some chemicals, such as cadmium.

With all this in mind, men over the age of forty should be screened for prostate cancer as part of their annual physical. In the event of symptoms related to enlarged prostate, they should not wait for their physical, but see a physician right away. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle including a diet low in fat and high in fiber will benefit the overall health of an individual, and may stave off the onset of prostate cancer. Finally, men should be sure to avoid high-risk sex, and take protective precautions when engaging in non-monogamous sex.

The keys to prostate cancer prevention are a healthy lifestyle and early detection. Because all possible causes of the disease are not known, taking the above precautions will lessen one's chances of contracting the disease, it is not fool-proof. Therefore, regular screenings and communication with your health care provider are absolutely necessary. A diagnosis of prostate cancer no longer comes with a devastating prognosis; with early detection and an aggressive treatment plan, victims of the disease can eventually put the disease behind them and get on with their lives.


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