According to the American Cancer Society, one man in six will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime. In the United States, that will results in approximately 240,890 new cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed while approximately 33,720 men are expected to die from the disease. September is Prostate Cancer Month and My Family’s Home Care wanted to alert all men as well as women who love their male relatives and friends about:
On a recent visit home to visit my parents, I learned that one of my favorite high school teachers was diagnosed with prostate cancer. Unfortunately, the 65-year old retired school teacher was only given three months to live. He is currently undergoing aggressive treatment to fight the disease.
Although scientists have not found out what causes prostate cancer, my former teacher may have detected the disease sooner if he had taken one of two tests. The first test is done by testing the amount of prostate-specific
antigen (PSA) in the blood. The other test to find prostate cancer is the digital rectal exam (DRE), in which the doctor puts a gloved finger into the rectum to fee the prostate gland. I am encouraging all men over the age of 40,
especially African-American men who have a higher risk, to go to their family physician to have PSA Blood Test and/or a Digital Rectal Exam done as a part of their annual physical check-up.
In addition to going to the doctor, it is important that men maintain a well-balanced diet and lifestyle. It has been documented that men who eat a lot of red meat or high-fat dairy products appear to have a slightly higher chance
of getting prostate cancer. Men at a higher risk of prostate cancer also have a tendency to eat fewer fruits and
vegetables. The American Cancer Society recommends:
These guidelines on nutrition and exercise may also lower the risk of some other types of cancer, as well as other health problems.
For men who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer, there are various forms of treatment to fight the disease. It is important for men and their families to work with their team of physicians, counselors, nutritionist and support groups to determine the best treatment option to overcome the disease. For men and their families looking for support or to learn more about prostate cancer, the Charlotte area has the following resources:
As men, I know that we do not like to share our pain or acknowledge that our bodies are going through physical changes. Do not be one of the 33,720 men expected to die of prostate cancer. Do not follow the examples of my former teacher or the former Florida State head football coach, Bobby Bowden, who ignored getting testing until it was nearly too late. Be proactive and get tested for prostate cancer today!