What is Prostate and Prostate Cancer?

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What is Prostate and Prostate Cancer?

What is Prostate:

The prostate is a chestnut-sized gland in the male reproductive system and is located between the bladder and the urethra (the tubular structure that carries urine from the bladder to the outside of the body).

What is Prostate Cancer?

The prostate is largely composed of muscle fibers and glands. Its main function is to produce fluid to the sperm to deliver the sperm.

Prostate cancer is a malignant tumor originating from the outer part of this gland, and as it grows, it spreads to the inner parts of the prostate.

Cancer that is located only in the prostate and does not protrude beyond the capsule is called “Localized Prostate Cancer”. Like other cancers, prostate cancer can spread (metastasize).

And it primarily spreads locally to the tissues around the prostate or to the seminal vesicle (semen storage sac behind the prostate).

Locally spreading tumors spread to other parts of the body, such as lymph nodes and bones, over time.

Stages of Prostate Cancer

In prostate cancer, staging is done based on how far the tumor has spread in and around the prostate.

The following are taken into account when staging.

  • The size of the tumor
  • Spread of the tumor in the tissues inside or around the prostate
  • Whether the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes
  • Spread to other parts of the body (metastasis)

Stage 1

In the first stage, the tumor is only in the prostate. The tumor is too small to be felt on rectal examination. It does not spread to lymph nodes or spread to other parts of the body. It’s low grade.

Stage 2

In the second stage, the tumor has advanced into the prostate but does not spread around it. At this stage, tumor rectal examination or imaging methods (MR) can be detected.

It does not spread to lymph nodes or spread to other parts of the body.

Stage 3

In the third stage, the tumor has spread beyond the prostate capsule and into tissues such as the seminal vesicle (sperm sac). It does not spread to lymph nodes or spread to other parts of the body.

Stage 4

In the fourth stage, the cancer has spread to other tissues around the prostate. At this stage, there may be spread to the lymph nodes, bones, liver, or lungs. (metastasis).

It is very important to determine the degree of prostate cancer, to apply the appropriate treatment and to follow the course of the disease.

What are the Causes ?

The exact cause of prostate cancer is unknown. Having a family history of prostate cancer and high smoking consumption increase the risk of its occurrence.

Other risk factors are:

  • Advancing age,
  • Irregular and unbalanced nutrition;
  • Foods cooked at high temperatures,
  • Animal fat and red meat,
  • Being overweight,
  • Sedentary lifestyle,
  • Age,
  • Black race,
  • Family history of prostate or breast cancer

It can be listed as a diet rich in high male hormone levels and a sedentary life.

What are the Symptoms ?

Prostate cancer symptoms usually begin to appear in the later stages of the disease and can manifest itself with many symptoms.

Since the disease progresses insidiously, it is possible to detect it at an early stage in asymptomatic people only with regular screening.

There are many common symptoms of prostate cancer:

  • Difficulty urinating
  • Frequent urination
  • Presence of blood in the urine or semen
  • Erection problems
  • Pain during ejaculation
  • Involuntary weight loss

What are  Treatment Methods?

  • Treatment options include surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, hormone therapy, or different combinations of these. If the disease is diagnosed at an early stage, a period of follow-up without any treatment may be recommended.
  • The most common and effective treatment option is surgery. And it usually involves the complete removal of the prostate (prostatectomy).
  • Prostatectomy refers to the process of removing prostate tissue affected by cancer. Radical prostatectomy is the surgical removal of the entire gland.
  • This surgical procedure can be performed as open – closed surgery. In open surgical procedures, the prostate gland is reached by making a large incision in the lower abdomen by the operator physician.
  • The perineum between the rectum and the scrotum (testicle) is another area that can be preferred in open surgical procedures in the treatment of prostate cancer.
  • Closed prostate surgery is performed laparoscopically. In this procedure, the prostate gland is removed piece by piece with cameras and surgical instruments placed in the body through small incisions.
  • Laparoscopic procedures are less invasive than open surgical procedures. And the incisions made in this surgery are smaller.
    In both open and laparoscopic surgery, the surgeon examines the lymph nodes and other tissues around the prostate for signs of disease.
  • After the removal of the prostate, the amount of semen produced is reduced. This may cause a complaint called “dry orgasm” in post-operative patients.

What Is Good For The Prostate?

Consuming foods that are good for the prostate may reduce the risk of prostate cancer. Especially foods containing vitamin E, zinc and selenium are good for the prostate. In addition to nutrition, factors such as regular physical activity and having a healthy body weight may also benefit the prevention of prostate cancer.

Among the foods that are beneficial for prostate health;

  • Garlic, eggs and seafood containing selenium
  • Nuts, milk and legumes rich in zinc
  • Fruits and vegetables containing lycopene such as tomatoes, watermelons and rose hips
  • Whole grains, fruits and vegetables.

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