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Prostate cancer

Prostate cancer symptoms

In most cases, prostate cancer symptoms are not apparent in the early stages of the disease. The symptoms of prostate cancer may be different for each man and any one of these symptoms may be caused by other conditions. As a result, routine screenings in the form of digital rectal exams and prostate-specific androgen (PSA) tests are important.

The American Cancer Society recommends that men make an informed decision with their doctor about whether to be tested for prostate cancer, beginning at age 50. Men with one or more risk factors for prostate cancer should consult with their physician about whether to start routine screening earlier.

Urinary symptoms of prostate cancer

Because of the proximity of the prostate gland to the bladder and urethra, prostate cancer may be accompanied by a variety of urinary symptoms. Depending on its size and location, a tumor may press on and constrict the urethra, inhibiting the flow of urine. Some prostate cancer signs related to urination include:

  • Burning or pain during urination
  • Difficulty urinating, or trouble starting and stopping while urinating
  • More frequent urges to urinate at night
  • Loss of bladder control
  • Decreased flow or velocity of urine stream
  • Blood in urine (hematuria)

Other prostate cancer signs and symptoms

Prostate cancer may spread (metastasize) to nearby tissues or bones. If the cancer spreads to the spine, it may press on the spinal nerves. Other prostate cancer symptoms include:

  • Blood in semen
  • Difficulty getting an erection (erectile dysfunction)
  • Painful ejaculation
  • Swelling in legs or pelvic area
  • Numbness or pain in the hips, legs or feet
  • Bone pain that doesn’t go away, or leads to fractures

It is important to report new signs or symptoms to your doctor. Symptoms of recurrent prostate cancer vary from person to person. Depending on its size and location, a prostate tumor may press on and constrict the urethra, causing a variety of urinary symptoms.

Signs and symptoms of metastatic prostate cancer may include:

  • Erectile dysfunction or painful ejaculation
  • Swelling in the legs or pelvic area
  • Numbness or pain in the hips, legs or feet
  • Bone pain that does not go away or leads to fractures

The symptoms of prostate cancer often differ from patient to patient. The most common first sign of recurrent prostate cancer is a rise in the level of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) in the blood, making regular PSA tests all the more important in measuring the progress of treatment and checking for signs of recurrence.