Prostate Cancer

The prostate is a small gland lying just below the bladder and in front of the rectum. The prostate wraps around the urethra, the tube that carries urine from the bladder. Your prostate produces some of your semen, the fluid that carries sperm. If cells in the prostate change abnormally, cancer may form. Prostate cancer often causes no symptoms unless the growth presses on the urethra. This is why screening tests are important. Adenocaricinoma of the prostate is the clinical term for a cancerous tumor on the prostate gland. As prostate cancer grows, it may spread to the interior of the gland, to tissues near the prostate, to sac-like structures attached to the prostate, and to distant parts of the body. Prostate cancer confined to the gland often is treated successfully. According to the American Cancer Society, ACS, prostate cancer is the most common type of cancer in men in the United States, other than skin cancer. The ACS estimates that about 230,900 new cases will be diagnosed on an annual basis and 29,900 men will die of the disease. Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in men, exceeded only by lung cancer. Prostate cancer occurs in 1 out of 6 men. Reports of diagnosed cases have risen rapidly in recent years and mortality rates are declining, which may be due to increased screening. The risk for developing prostate cancer rises significantly with age, and 60% of newly diagnosed cases occur in men over the age of 70.