Risks and survival rates of prostate cancer
Yes. Like any other cancer, prostate cancer is a potential killer. However, this is true of the metastasized prostate cancer that has remained undiagnosed for a long time. The disease is vastly curable when diagnosed early. This cancer is less dreadful than other types of cancer due to its low rate of mortality. Most people get diagnosed with prostate cancer in their old age and only one out of 36 men die from it.
After skin cancer, prostate cancer is the most common cancer amongst men in the United States and the second leading cause of cancer death. This cancer is slow-growing in nature with relatively fewer chances to spread to other organs and cause metastasis. Due to widespread screening with prostate screening antigen (PSA) test, prostate cancer gets detected most often in its early stages. 92 out of 100 men get diagnosed when the cancer is limited inside the prostate. Digital rectal examination (DRE) is also added to the PSA test as a part of the screening process. The test requires the insertion of fingers into the patient’s rectum to feel any hardness (or extra growth) of the prostate.
Early-stage prostate cancer is easier to treat than advanced-stage (metastasized) cancer. Almost all men with early-stage prostate cancer survive for 5 years or more. Many survive for 10 to more than 15 years. The chances of survival decrease as cancer spread beyond the prostate. If cancer has metastasized to other parts of the body, only three out of 10 men will survive for 5 years after the diagnosis.
|Survival years||Survival rate||What does the survival rate mean|
|At least 5 years||99%||99 out of 100 people with prostate cancer can live for at least 5 years after diagnosis.|
|At least 10 years||98%||98 out of 100 people with prostate cancer can live for at least 10 years after diagnosis.|
|At least 15 years||96%||96 out of 100 people with prostate cancer can live for at least 15 years after diagnosis.|
How is prostate cancer treated?
Doctors evaluate the severity of a patient’s prostate cancer based on three factors:
- Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels
- Gleason score [grading system that describes how much of cancer from a biopsy looks like healthy tissue (lower score) or abnormal tissue (higher score)]
- Tumor staging
- The doctor will discuss with the patient each of these factors and how the treatments differ because of them.
With early-stage prostate cancer, doctors generally adopt the following treatment protocol:
- Active surveillance: Active surveillance is a common method adopted by doctors in the management of prostate cancer. As it is slow-growing cancer, doctors recommend only monitoring early-stage prostate cancers with regular tests to check their progress. No treatment is given during this period. Only if the doctors suspect that cancer is growing and causing discomfort to the patient, then the treatment be initiated.
- Prostatectomy: Prostatectomy (surgical removal of the prostate) is the primary treatment of prostate cancer in younger men.
- Radiation therapy: Radiation therapy involves the use of high-energy waves to destroy cancer cells. It is the most preferred cancer therapy for older men or those with other co-existing diseases. It can be delivered to the patient in any of the two ways:
- External beam radiation: This involves focusing high-energy waves from an external machine on the tumor.
- Brachytherapy: Radiation is administered by placing a radioactive dye in the tumor with the help of either an implant or hollow tube.
Androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) is usually the choice of treatment for metastatic prostate cancer. It is also used for treating patients who are unfit or unwilling to undergo surgery and/or radiation therapy.
IMAGESBrowse through our medical image collection to see illustrations of human anatomy and physiology See Images
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
American Cancer Society. How Is Prostate Cancer Treated? https://www.cancer.org/cancer/prostate-cancer/treating.html
Top Can Prostate Cancer Kill You? Related Articles
dutasterideDutasteride is a medication used to treat prostate enlargement (benign prostatic hyperplasia) in adult males by shrinking and slowing the growth of prostate tissue, and relieving urinary symptoms. Dutasteride is not intended for use in women or children. Common side effects of dutasteride include impotence, reduced sexual drive (libido), ejaculation disorder, breast tissue enlargement (gynecomastia) and tenderness, increase in the levels of hormones (luteinizing hormone, testosterone, thyroid stimulating hormone), and testicular pain and swelling.
Erleada (apalutamide)Erleada is a prescription medicine used for the treatment of prostate cancer that has spread to other parts of the body and still responds to a medical or surgical treatment that lowers testosterone, or that has not spread to other parts of the body and no longer responds to a medical or surgical treatment that lowers testosterone.
finasteride (Proscar)Finasteride (Proscar) is a drug prescribed for the treatment of prostate gland enlargement (benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH). Side effects are rare but can include impotence and decreased sex drive. Finasteride should not be used by women, children, or male partners of women trying to become pregnant.
Flomax and Viagra for BPH TreatmentFlomax (brand name tamsulosin) is a medication doctors prescribe to males who have an enlarged prostate gland and who are having difficulty urinating due to a condition called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Viagra (brand name sildenafil) is a medication doctors prescribe to men who are having problems getting and sustaining an erection (erectile dysfunction, ED, impotence). Viagra works by increasing blood flow to the penis, which allows for a man to get and keep an erection. Common side effects of Flomax include headache, dizziness, hay fever, anemia, abnormal taste in the mouth, weakness, nausea, and vomiting. Common side effects of Viagra include flushing, muscle pain (myalgia), nausea, back pain, problems with vision, indigestion, headache, rash, nasal congestion, and dizziness.
How Do You Know What Stage Your Prostate Cancer Is?Prostate cancer is the abnormal growth of cells in the prostate gland. Your doctor can tell what stage prostate cancer is in by performing a digital rectal exam, PSA test, and imaging.
How Does Prostate Cancer Kill You in the End?Prostate cancer is cancer of the prostate gland in men. Death from prostate cancer most often happens when cancer has spread (metastasized) to other organs in the body.
How Quickly Does Prostate Cancer Spread?Prostate cancer is a cancer that develops in the prostate gland in men and it is one of the most common types of cancer. In some cases, it can take up to eight years to spread from the prostate to other parts of the body (metastasis), typically the bones. In other cases, it may be more aggressive.
lycopeneLycopene is a powerful antioxidant that scavenges the free radicals. Used as a supplement, lycopene may prevent the growth of cancer cells. Lycopene may slow down blood clotting. Exercise caution with lycopene supplements if you are taking blood thinners. The side effects of lycopene include skin rashes (rare). Lycopene is considered nontoxic and is unlikely to cause any serious adverse effects. Small amounts of lycopene in food is likely safe during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men after skin cancer.
- Risk factors include age, family history, ethnicity, and diet.
- Prostate cancer is diagnosed by a digital rectal exam, prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test, and prostate biopsy.
- Symptoms may include
- frequent need to urinate,
- incontinence, pain,
- blood in the urine,
- fatigue, and more.
- Prognosis and treatment depend on cancer staging.
- Watchful waiting,
- cryotherapy, and
- other management strategies are available.
- Research and clinical trials strive to find new and better treatments for prostate cancer.
Prostate Cancer QuizIs prostate cancer the most common cancer in men? Take this prostate cancer quiz to find out and learn the causes, symptoms, and treatments of this disease.
Signs of Prostate Cancer: Symptoms, PSA Test, TreatmentsWhat is prostate cancer? Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men. Learn the signs and symptoms of prostate cancer, along with causes and treatments. Know the stages, survival rates and how to lower your risk of prostate cancer.
sea cucumberSea cucumbers are a rich source of several important nutrients including protein, vitamins A, B1, and B2, and minerals calcium, magnesium, iron, and zinc. Sea cucumber is purported to have many health benefits and is used to treat many conditions traditionally. Suggested uses include cancer, arthritis, joint pain, urinary frequency, impotence, and longevity. Do not take if you are taking blood-thinning medications. There have been no reports of side effects from ingesting sea cucumber or its extracts.
tamsulosinTamsulosin is a drug prescribed for the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH, enlarged prostate). The most common adverse effects of tamsulosin are anemia (decreased red blood cells), decreased white blood cells, nausea, vomiting, abnormal taste, increased triglycerides, and weakness. Other side effects include low blood pressure, dizziness, fainting, headache, abdominal pain, weight loss, muscle pain, abnormal ejaculation, upper respiratory tract infections, and rash.
testosterone gelTestosterone gel is a topical medication containing testosterone and is prescribed for the treatment of low testosterone levels. The most common side effects of testosterone gel are headache, high blood pressure, acne, abnormal lab tests (for example, glucose and cholesterol tests), application site reactions (for example, itching, blisters, and redness), enlarged prostate, and increased serum prostate specific antigen (PSA) levels.
What Happens in the Final Stages of Prostate Cancer?Prostate cancer is an abnormal growth of cells in the prostate gland. In the final stages of prostate cancer you may feel grief, get closer with family and friends, and have faith in a power greater than yourself.
yohimbineYohimbine is a prescription medicine used to treat male impotence (erectile dysfunction) due to diabetes, vascular conditions or psychological origin. Yohimbine has also been used as a street drug, promoted as an aphrodisiac, hallucinogen, and for weight loss with little scientific evidence Yohimbine is a prescription medicine used to treat male impotence (erectile dysfunction) due to diabetes, vascular conditions, or psychological origin. Yohimbine should not be used by women and children. Yohimbine is not for use in women and pregnant or nursing women certainly should not take it.
Zoladex (goserelin acetate)Zoladex (goserelin acetate) implant is a GnRH agonist used to treat advanced breast cancer, prostate cancer, endometriosis, and endometrial thinning. Serious side effects vary depending on the condition treated.