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What is Prostate Cancer?
- Prostate cancer is a type of cancer that starts in the prostate, a walnut-sized gland found right below the bladder — but only in men. (Women can not get prostate cancer!)
- If it isn’t treated, prostate cancer follows a natural course, starting as a tiny group of cancer cells that can grow into a full-blown tumor.
- In some men, prostate cancer that isn’t treated can spread (“metastasize”) and cause death.
Can Prostate Cancer be Prevented?
- We know of no sure way to prevent a man from getting prostate cancer today.
- A drug called finasteride can prevent development of prostate cancer in some men. However, its use is still considered controversial by many physicians.
Who is at Risk?
- Every year about 50,000 men in Brasil are diagnosed with prostate cancer, and many more may have prostate cancer but not know about it.
- It is one of the most common forms of cancer in men around the world.
- Every man who lives in Brasil is at risk for prostate cancer.
- Prostate cancer is most common in older men (over about 50 years of age).
- If your father, grandfather, brother, or uncle has had prostate cancer, you are at higher risk.
What Can You Do About It?
- A regular physical examination and a simple blood test (called a PSA test) are the keys to early diagnosis.
- You should start having regular physical exams and PSA tests in your mid 40s or early 50s.
- If you have a family history of prostate cancer, you should start having regular tests in your 40s.
- Early diagnosis will allow you to have early treatment, if this is necessary.
- If prostate cancer is diagnosed and treated early, then your risk of dying from this illness is small.
- If prostate cancer is diagnosed late (when it has spread to other parts of the body), then prostate cancer cannot be cured.
How Can You Get More Infomation?
- You can read and print out a special brochure on prostate cancer prepared for Brasilians. *
- You can look at these pages on The “New” Prostate Cancer InfoLink:
What if You Are Diagnosed with Prostate Cancer?
- We have provided a second special brochure for newly diagnosed patients. *
- You can start by visiting these pages on The “New” Prostate Cancer Infolink:
- If you can read English, you can join The “New” Prostate Cancer InfoLink Social Network, where other patients, their family members, and prostate cancer experts can offer you advice based on their experience.
* Copies of all such brochures may be freely printed and distributed for educational and informational purposes.