What you need to know about Prostate Cancer

Posted by Jessica on 4-Jun-2018 8:30:00 AM



Canadian men have a 1 in 7 chances of being diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime. This ranks prostate cancer as the 4th most common form of cancer in Canada. Thankfully, routine screening allows for 70% of diagnosis to be of early stage (I and II) detection. Here’s what you need to know:

What is Prostate Cancer?

The prostate is a walnut sized glad located below the bladder and in front of the rectum that is regulated by the male hormone testosterone. Prostate cancer is a disease of the prostate cells where they grow abnormally and uncontrollably. They can form tumors and/or spread to other parts of the body (metastasize).


The risk of Prostate Cancer increases with…

  • Age: 50+, baseline should be established in your 40s
  • Family History: First degree relatives (father, brother, son)
  • Ethnicity: Black African & Black Caribbean
  • Diet: High Sugar, Processed Meat & Dairy Consumption
  • Being Overweight & Sedentary


Symptoms are not always present, especially in the early stages, but include:

  • Urgent need and difficulty urinating
  • Frequent urination, especially at night
  • Burning or pain when urinating
  • Painful ejaculation
  • Blood in the urine or semen



Digital Rectal Examine (DRE) – The most common test is a physical examine performed by your doctor to assess the feel of the prostate gland via the rectum. A healthy prostate feels symmetrical, smooth, soft, and rubbery.

PSA Test – A simple blood test that measures the amount of prostate specific antigen protein in the blood. Higher levels of PSA indicate prostate concerns.

Transrectal Ultrasound (TRUS) & Biopsy – Used to determine if any suspicious abnormalities are cancerous. The procedure uses local anesthetic to extract a tissue sample from the prostate gland.

Prostate MRI – A non invasive exam used to assess problems including infection, enlarged prostate, complications from surgery, or possible prostate cancer. CDC has Calgary’s only 3T Private MRI machine.


Take Away:

Prostate cancer can be slow developing with many individuals being unaware of any issues. Routine screening is essential for early detection which increases treatment options and survival rates.







Topics: Ultrasound, Men's Health