Prostate cancer: Doctor outlines symptoms you might experience
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Prostate cancer is a somewhat elusive disease. Until it has grown significantly large enough to put pressure on the urethra, it doesn’t show any obvious signs. Yet, it can be detected before physical signs occur through testing, although there is no official screening programme in the UK. Another way to be on-top of the disease is to be aware of the symptoms.
The main symptoms of prostate cancer that you may already be aware of may arise during a toilet break.
They include hesitancy when peeing, needing to rush to the toilet, peeing more frequently, and having a weak flow.
Other noticeable signs of prostate cancer, which are outlined by the NHS include feeling like your bladder hasn’t emptied after peeing and blood in your urine or semen.
The prostate is a walnut-sized gland that creates fluid that mixes with sperm in the testicles, creating semen.
It’s found in between the bladder and penis, which means it’s also in close proximity with your urethra.
Problems with your peeing won’t always be a sign of prostate cancer and instead can be the result of benign prostate enlargement.
If you have any of these symptoms, you should visit your GP who may provide a digital rectal examination and discuss getting tested.
There’s a few signs many people may not realise are severe signs of the disease – such as a sensation in the hips.
Cancer.net, explains that “if cancer has spread outside of the prostate gland”, it may cause “pain in the back, hips, thighs, shoulders, or other bones”.
If you are diagnosed with prostate cancer while experiencing these symptoms, the doctors are likely to focus on palliative care.
Should you get a test?
In light of former BBC Breakfast host Bill Turnbull’s saddening death due to prostate cancer, there has been more talk about the importance of getting tested.
Over his life, Turnbull helped to raise awareness of prostate cancer and encouraged men to get tested.
One of the main tests, which may be highlighted by your GP, is the PSA (prostate-specific antigen) test.
This checks you for levels of PSA in your blood, which if found in high levels, may be a sign of significant prostate damage.
There has been controversy around PSA tests, however. Some argue that the tests lead to over diagnosing prostate cancer.
In some cases, prostate cancer can grow extremely slow, and require minimal treatment.
Yet, many men opt for invasive surgery after testing positive for high PSA levels. This may involve removing the prostate, which leaves men with erectile dysfunction and incontinence.
On the other hand, PSA tests have been credited with saving the lives of thousands of men each year who would have otherwise left the disease too late.
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