September is National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month(NPCA). It has been recognized ever since 2003 when President George W. Bush first proclaimed September as National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month. It is extremely significant that we continue to bring awareness to what is a very deadly disease.
Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer among men, only skin cancer is more common. In fact, 14% of men can expect to be diagnosed with prostate cancer at some point during their life. Men at the highest risk for prostate cancer are men over the age of 50, African Americans, and those with a family history of Prostate cancer. Nearly 90% of new prostate cancer diagnoses occur in patients aged 55 and up, and 60% of all new cases occur in men 65 and up. African Americans are 63% more likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer and men with a father or brother with prostate cancer are twice as likely to be diagnosed. For information on a state by state breakdown of cancer incidence you can visit the CDC website. They have data for every state except Nevada, probably because what happens in Nevada, stays in Nevada.
Not only is prostate cancer the second most common cancer among men, it is also the second most common cancer killer among men. The American Cancer Society predicts 26,120 Americans will die from prostate cancer in 2016. But it is not all bad news. While prostate cancer will account for 13.3% of all new cancer cases in 2016, it will account for only 4.7% of all cancer deaths. And nearly 99% of men diagnosed with prostate cancer can expect to survive at least five years after their initial diagnosis.
The rate of new cases of prostate cancer and of prostate cancer related deaths has dropped steadily over the last two decades. This is due, in no small part, to early detection screenings and advances in technology in the screening and treating of prostate cancer. There is no denying that screenings assist in finding many prostate cancers early. Most of the time, the prostate cancer screening is done by either testing the amount of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) in the blood, or by digital rectal exam (DRE). Some of the most cutting edge technology used in the detection and treatment of prostate cancer can be found at the Urological Institute of NENY.
This September, wear your light blue colors to support prostate cancer awareness! And if you or a loved one is at a higher risk for prostate cancer and you would like to schedule an appointment for a screening, please contact the Urological Institute of NENY at 518-262-3341.