On Tuesday, the 4th of February 2014, the World Health Organisation declared cancer the World’s biggest killer. Fourteen million new cases were reported globally in 2012, while 8.2 million people died of cancer globally in the same year. The yearly figure of new cases is expected to rise to about 22 million in the next twenty (20) years.
The commonest cancers reported in 2012 are:- Lung cancer, breast cancer, large intestine cancer, Prostate cancer, Liver cancer, cancer of the cervix and Non-Hodgkin-Lymphonic (NHL) some of the causes of cancer are discussed below:
1.Prostate Cancer is Common and affects only Men.
Prostate cancer affects only men because women do not have prostate gland. Over the last couple of years, more cases of prostate cancer have been detected because of the widely available diagnostic test- Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) and greater awareness. Also great willingness by those at risk to discuss the disease and go for future and regular test. This has been accompanied by reduced mortality rate.
2.It affects Men older than 65yrs in most cases.
Prostate cancer is associated with age and occurs more in men above the age of 65years. It is the cancer whose incidence increases most with age. The cause of prostate cancer is unknown but age and heredity play a role.
3.Diagnosis by Rectal examination PSA and Biopsy.
The prostate gland is situated just below the bladder and in front of the rectum. It is therefore felt on rectal examination. An enlarged, hard and irregular prostate glands informs the decision of the physician to ask for Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) test and if necessary, a Biopsy.
4.Treatment by Surgery and/or radiotherapy.
The choice of treatment depends on the stage of the cancer, extent and spread of the tumor. The age of the person is equally important. If the person is in his eighties for example and in good health, the physician may decide to do nothing.
In some cases, the tumor may be very aggressive and this will also inform the decision of the physician. In some men, prostate cancer may remain confined for many years without causing any health problem. The way to go is therefore a decision of the physician and the patient. Surgery, drugs and radiotherapy are used.
5. Prevention by Screening, foods and Early Treatment.
It is advised that all men above 40years go for yearly rectal examination. A baseline rectal examination and Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) level can be established on the first examination. If the urologist notices any changes, this could lead to biopsy.
Such annual screening tests are normally done until the age of 75years. Development of prostate cancer after the age is not likely to be the cause of death of the particular Progression of the cancer is slow in most cases.
Certain fruits have been associated with prevention of prostate cancer; such fruits include avocado pear and tomatoes. The latter is said to contain lycopene which helps to prevent cancer of the prostrate. Avocado pear contains phytochemicals which help to do same.