The beginning of June marks the start of March for Men (June 2-16), a campaign to raise awareness of prostate cancer, the most common form of cancer in men in the UK.
With over 46,000 men in the UK being diagnosed with prostate cancer each year, local NHS chiefs are backing the campaign by helping to raise awareness of the condition and are encouraging local residents to support the March for Men campaign.
Prostate cancer happens when cells in the prostate grow at an uncontrollable rate, once it begins to spread outside of the prostate that’s when the patient needs treatment.
The symptoms of prostate cancer only start to show during the latter stages of the cancer, when the tumour is big enough to put pressure on the urethra.
Key symptoms include:
- Urinating more frequently (especially during the night)
- Taking a long time while urinating
- Needing to rush to the toilet
A number of men who suffer from prostate cancer will not need any treatment; sufferers choose to delay treatment, because it can cause urinary incontinence and erectile dysfunction. Instead, they will just need to monitor the condition. Treatment is only required, if there is a risk that the cancer will spread to other areas of the body.
If the cancer spreads and continues to get worse, patients will be given a cancer care team, which will consist of several specialists, including a radiologist, a pathologist and a specialised nurse. The type of prostate cancer will determine what treatment is necessary.
Dr Neil Smith GP lead for cancer commissioning for Blackburn with Darwen and East Lancashire Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) said: “It is a good idea for men to familiarise themselves with the symptoms of prostate cancer, so that they can go to their GP as soon as they think there might be an issue.
“Particularly if caught early, prostate cancer is very manageable and new treatments for prostate cancer are constantly being developed.”
For more information about prostate cancer, visit the NHS Choices website.
If you have any concerns about prostate cancer you can talk to a specialist nurse on 0800 074 8383 or to view a number of services which can support you with prostate cancer, visit the Prostate Cancer UK website.
Anyone who has been affected by prostate cancer is encouraged to take part in the March for Men series of walking events. The marches provide an opportunity to celebrate beating prostate cancer, to raise money for those fighting it, or to raise awareness of the condition and how to seek an early diagnosis. The events also give people a chance to remember those they have lost. The events will take place in London, Leeds and Glasgow and leading the walks will be Sky Sports presenter, Jeff Stelling.