There is no known prostate
cancer cause. While medical technology has advanced
in its knowledge and administration of prostate cancer
treatment, researchers have not identified a cause.
Because there is no known cause, there is no definite
plan for prostate
cancer prevention. There are however certain men
who are at a higher risk than others. The risk factors
include diet, age, family history, and race.
Prostate Cancer Diet
Diet may also be a precursor to the development of prostate cancer. Diets that are high in saturated fat may increase the risk of prostate cancer. Obesity may also increase the risk of prostate cancer. Higher levels of fat in the body have been linked to a higher risk of prostate cancer due to elevated levels of testosterone.
Testosterone is the male sex hormone that causes the male organs to develop in the male fetus as well as secondary sexual characteristics. Testosterone also fuels the production of the cells of the prostate, and if those cells are cancerous, testosterone fuels the tumor growth.
Age and Prostate Cancer
Age is possibly the most important factor in determining whether a man will develop prostate cancer. The older a man is, the more likely it is that his doctor will find prostate cancer. Some doctors even believe that if all men were to live forever that 100 percent of men would develop prostate cancer.
The rule of the thumb is that once
a man passes age 50, he should receive a yearly prostate-specific
antigen test as well as a digital
rectal exam. There are no early prostate cancer
symptoms. Getting the tests is the best prostate cancer
treatment because early detection is the key to beating
Family History of Prostate Cancer
A family history of prostate cancer indicates an increased risk of developing the disease. Men with a first degree relative who have developed prostate cancer are twice as likely to develop prostate cancer than men with no prostate cancer in his family history.
Men with relatives who developed prostate cancer before age 50 are at a higher risk for developing aggressive prostate cancer while men with more than one first degree relative are also at a higher risk. Yearly PSA tests and digital rectal exams are recommended beginning at age 40 for these men. Aggressive cancer is made up of cells which are severely damaged by the disease and are revealed to be poorly-differentiated during a pathological examination. Aggressive prostate cancer extends more quickly than less aggressive cancer.
Race and Prostate Cancer
In America, African-American men most likely to develop prostate cancer. No one is quite sure why African-American men are at a higher risk. Some researchers believe that African-American men do not have the same access to quality healthcare as men of other races. However, African-American men are also more likely to develop more aggressive forms of the disease. The predisposition to aggressive prostate cancer indicates that a biological, not sociological, factor accounts for the increased risk for African-American men. African-American men therefore are strongly encouraged to begin PSA testing at age 40.