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Understanding Prostate Cancer

Healthcare worker and elderly patientOther than skin cancer, prostate cancer is the most common type of cancer diagnosed in men in the United States. Prostate cancer is a disease in which normal cells in a man’s prostate gland change and grow out of control, forming a tumor. Some prostate cancers grow very slowly and may not cause symptoms for years.

Our board-certified medical and radiation oncologists have the knowledge and experience you want on your side when you are dealing with prostate cancer. You will experience compassionate and personal care while our cancer care team determines the course of treatment that is right for you.

If you are experiencing problems with your prostate, contact your primary care provider or call our Cancer Care team at 740-687-6900.

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Causes & Risks

Some factors that contribute to your prostate cancer risk are outside of your control, such as your age, race or ethnicity, family history and genetics. But there are things you can do to lower your chance of developing prostate cancer.

  •  Do not use tobacco
  •  Eat a healthy diet high in fruits and vegetables
  •  Maintain a healthy weight
  •  Exercise regularly
  •  Avoid sexually-transmitted infections (STIs)
  •  Limit exposure to industrial chemicals

There are ways to screen for prostate cancer, which may result in catching cancer early when the disease is most treatable. Talk to your healthcare provider about whether screening is the right choice for you.

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Symptoms

In the early stages, prostate cancer often does not cause any symptoms. Advanced prostate cancer may cause:

  • Urination issues, including a weak urine stream or a frequent need to urinate, especially at night
  • Blood in the urine or semen
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Hip, back or chest pain
  • Loss of bladder or bowel control
  • Weakness or numbness in the legs or feet

Many of these symptoms are more likely to be caused by a condition other than prostate cancer. If you experience any of these issues, it is important that you speak with your healthcare provider about your concerns as soon as possible.

Male Patient And Doctor Have Consultation In Hospital Room

Treatments

After a prostate cancer diagnosis, your healthcare provider will determine your treatment options based on the size and location of the tumor, whether the cancer has spread and your specific medical history and needs. If prostate cancer is found at an early stage and is growing slowly, your healthcare provider may recommend active surveillance. Your oncologist will collaborate with a variety of other specialists to ensure that you are receiving the most holistic care possible.

Resources

Fairfield Medical Center and our Cancer Resource Center provide a vast array of support programs, resources and care for our patients with cancer. These programs and resources can help you and your family address issues that you may face as a result of your cancer diagnosis or treatment.


Fairfield Medical Cancer Resource Center

The Fairfield Medical Cancer Resource Center is open to any cancer patient and their support people. Educational classes, support services and retail products are offered to reduce stress and ease recovery and coping processes. The center is staffed Monday through Friday (or by appointment) by an FMC coordinator and volunteers, many of whom are cancer survivors.


Financial Support

There are a variety of financial resources available to those who qualify, including the Fairfield Medical Center Foundation and TWIGS One Cancer Care Fund. Members of your oncology team will work collaboratively with financial aid personnel to determine what individualized assistance is available to you.


Prostate Cancer Support Group

During this informative and educational session on prostate cancer, members discuss their experiences with cancer and share information and education with fellow attendees. Meetings are held at the Cancer Resource Center on the second Monday of each month from 7-9:00 p.m. There is no charge to attend, and all are welcome. For questions, contact Bill Stevens, Ph.D., at 740-687-6543.


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