Advanced Expertise in Caring for Men with Prostate Cancer
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men with an estimated one in nine men being diagnosed in their lifetime. However, because it is typically slow-growing, it is also one of the most treatable cancers. When found and treated early, the five-year survival rate is nearly 98 percent.
At University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center, we strive to maximize outcomes and quality of life for each patient. That is how we define success.
Your health is important. Get expert care.
If you have symptoms that suggest prostate disease or have been diagnosed with prostate cancer, call 216-844-3951 today to schedule an appointment with a men’s health expert. We offer both initial consults and second opinion appointments.
Understanding the Prostate Gland and Prostate Cancer
The prostate gland is part of the male reproductive system. Normally about the size of a walnut, the prostate is located in front of the rectum, just below the bladder. It surrounds the upper part of the urethra – the tube that carries urine from the bladder to an opening in the end of the penis. The prostate produces a fluid that nourishes and transports sperm.
Prostate cancer occurs when cells in the gland begin to change and grow out of control to form a lump or mass called a tumor. If undetected and untreated, prostate cancer can spread or metastasize – most often to the bones and lymph nodes. However, because it is often a slow-growing cancer, early screening methods may find it before it spreads. And, there are many very effective ways to treat prostate cancer and limit or manage the side effects of treatment.
Signs and Symptoms of Prostate Disease
Prostate cancer often shows no symptoms in the early stages. However if you are having symptoms that may be related to prostate health, you should discuss these with a physician. As the disease becomes more advanced, some of the more common symptoms may include:
- Weak or interrupted flow of urine
- Frequent or urgent need to urinate (especially at night)
- Trouble starting the flow of urine
- Trouble emptying the bladder completely
- Pain or burning while urinating
- Blood in the urine or semen
- Persistent bone pain
All of these symptoms may also be signs of other conditions and having one or more does not necessarily mean you have prostate cancer. For example, many older men experience an enlarged prostate or benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). This is a very common and treatable, noncancerous condition in which the prostate becomes enlarged and squeezes the urethra (urine tube), potentially causing an obstruction to urine flow.
If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed, it is important to be evaluated by a men’s health specialist so an accurate diagnosis can be made and an appropriate treatment plan developed.
Risk Factors for Prostate Cancer
The primary risk factors for prostate cancer are ones that cannot be avoided. They include:
- Age. The risk of developing prostate cancer increases as men age, with more than 90 percent of cases diagnosed in men 55 and older. It can, however, occur in younger men.
- Family history. If other closely related members of your family (parents or siblings) have had a cancer diagnosis, this may increase your risk for certain types of cancer, including prostate cancer. You should always let your physician know if you have a family history of any type of cancer - it may be a factor in determining the age at which you start screenings.
- Race. Statistics show that the prevalence of prostate cancer is higher in Black or African American men. The reason for this, however, has yet to be determined.
- Genetics. Several genetic mutations have been identified as risk factors for prostate cancer. Some of these may be passed from one generation to the next. In fact, it is estimated that one in ten cases of prostate cancer are hereditary in nature. If you have a family history of the disease, ask your doctor if genetic testing is appropriate for you.
There are also lifestyle factors that may increase your risk of prostate cancer. For example, obesity has been linked to an increased risk of prostate cancer.
Personalized Prostate Cancer Care, Designed to Meet Your Unique Needs
Just as every man is different, every case of prostate cancer is different. At University Hospitals, we consider each person’s unique combination of age, stage of life, lifestyle preferences, health goals/expectations and genetics to develop a treatment plan that will meet their unique medical needs and align with their priorities.
The doctors on our team are world-renowned prostate cancer experts. We take a multidisciplinary approach, bringing together urologists, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, pathologists, radiologists and other specialties to provide our patients with the most advanced diagnostics and treatments for prostate cancer. Our ultimate goal is to provide each patient with the most effective, personalized care and maximize their quality of life regardless of the diagnosis and/or prognosis.
University Hospitals was the first in Northeast Ohio to offer a new technique for prostate biopsy. Called the PrecisionPoint™ Transperineal Access System (PPTAS), this advanced, image-guided technology offers more precise tissue sampling with lower risk of infection.
In 2022, University Hospitals became the first health system in the world to be designated as a SpaceOAR™ Hydrogel Center of Excellence. We were also the first in the country to use the hydrogel spacer after it received FDA approval in 2015. SpaceOAR is an innovative new procedure that can minimize the potential side effects of prostate cancer radiation therapy.
In addition, prostate cancer research at UH is robust and ongoing - our physician scientists are always looking for new and better ways to treat the disease while preserving quality of life.
Our research spans from basic biological studies to advanced clinical trials. Many of our patients benefit by participating in prostate cancer clinical trials, which aim to preserve not only quantity of life, but also quality of life while undergoing treatment.
Your health is important. Get expert care.
If you have symptoms that suggest prostate disease or have been diagnosed with prostate cancer, call today to schedule an appointment with a men’s health expert.
We offer both initial consults and second opinion appointments.