Prostate cancer is now the most common cancer that occurs in men. It is not known exactly what causes the disease but there are a number of risk factors that may mean you are more likely to develop this disease. If you have any of the risk factors below and start to develop symptoms of this cancer, which include having to pass urine more frequently or having difficulty passing urine at all, then you should consult your doctor as soon as possible.
Prostate Cancer & Age
Your risk of developing prostate cancer increases as you get older and it is very rare for men under the age of fifty to develop the disease. Around a third of all cases are diagnosed in men aged 75 and over. It is thought around 80% of men of this age will develop cancerous cells in the prostate, but not all of these cases will develop into a cancerous tumor.
Prostate Cancer & Family History
If a close relative such as your father or brother has had prostate cancer then this could mean that you are more at risk of developing it yourself. This could indicate that there are certain genes that are carried that may make it more likely that you will develop this type of cancer. Studies are ongoing to determine if there is such a gene and whether the link really does exist. The younger your relatives were when they had the disease, the more at risk you may be.
Previous History Of Cancer
If you have previously had other certain types of cancer, including kidney and lung cancer then this may increase your risk of developing prostate cancer. If you are still receiving regular check ups after recovering from these cancers then it is important to tell your doctor at these appointments if you have experienced any symptoms that are associated with prostate cancer.
Many of the risk factors for prostate cancer are things that you cannot do anything to change such as your age and your family history of this disease. However, if you have some of the risk factors that have been discussed above then you may be offered regular check ups from your doctor that will monitor whether you have any other symptoms of the disease and offer you tests if necessary. There are some steps that can be taken to reduce your risk of developing prostate cancer such as eating a balanced diet but no studies have conclusively proven that there is a direct link between diet and the risk of developing this type of cancer.