Being diagnosed with prostate cancer, or even being concerned about an elevated risk, creates inordinate amounts of stress on the average guy. Here, we want to discuss some of the points of interest from experts in the field. This information is intended to help you navigate your journey through diagnosis, treatment, and recovery.
Food and Prostate Cancer
Many men who are concerned about prevention and treatment of prostate cancer look first to diet and other lifestyle modifications. While there is no single food or diet plan that has magical attributes, the evidence does support the validity of a low-sugar or sugar-free diet that is filled with lean meats or vegan proteins like beans and nuts. Protein sources should be complemented with leafy greens, whole grains, and fresh fruit.
A Look at Genetics
Any person who has a history of any form of cancer in their family has a higher risk than someone without that family history. Prostate cancer is no exception. Just as the BRCA2 gene is implicated in a higher risk for ovarian and breast cancer in women, this gene may also point to a higher risk of a man developing prostate cancer. At this time, however, evidence showing the benefit of testing is inconclusive. At most, men with a family history of prostate cancer are encouraged to speak with their physician regarding the optimal timing of PSA screening, rather than the inherited BRCA2 mutation.
PSA: About that Screening . . .
The recommended scheduling for PSA testing has changed over the years. Men who have never been diagnosed with prostate cancer, and who do not have an elevated risk such as family history, will most likely be encouraged to obtain screening at a later age, rather than on an annual basis. This is because the screening itself is not without risk (false positive). Currently, researchers seem to be discussing the benefits of less-frequent testing for low-risk patients. The diagnostic process is one that is approached carefully in each situation. Even older men with a high PSA may not have prostate cancer, but instead, may be living with an enlarged prostate.
Prostate cancer is a complex condition for which treatment options exist. At UT Urology, our goal is to act strategically with each patient to reach an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment plan. For more information on prostate cancer and your treatment options, call our Chattanooga practice at (423) 778-8765.