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Question:


Are urinary problems an initial symptom of prostate cancer?

Justin

Answer:

Dear Justin,

Prostate cancer usually doesn't produce any noticeable symptoms in its early stages; so many cases of prostate cancer aren't detected until the cancer has spread beyond the prostate.

Less than 5 percent of cases of prostate cancer have urinary problems as the initial symptom.

Urinary problems symptoms can also indicate the presence of other diseases.

Prostate cancer frequently is first detected by an abnormality on a blood test (the PSA) or as a hard nodule (lump) in the prostate gland.

Patients may also experience burning with urination or blood in the urine.

As the tumor continues to grow, it can completely block the flow of urine, resulting in a painfully obstructed and enlarged urinary bladder.

The symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) can mirror late-stage prostate cancer because the enlarging inner portion of the prostate puts pressure on the urethra, which can potentially cause urinary problems.

About 80% of men eventually develop enlarged prostates, but only some experience significant symptoms. BPH is a normal condition and is not life threatening.

Many patients do not experience initial symptoms of prostate cancer, making it important for men who are aged 50 and older to have routine screenings for the disease.

More than half, 65 percent, of men who are diagnosed with prostate cancer are 65 and older. Some patients may experience symptoms like urinary problems and continual pain in the lower back, pelvis or lower body.

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