Why is it important to know about Prostate Cancer

 We live in a society where problems related to the male reproductive organ is still a hushed topic and people abstain from talking about it as it is considered to reduce their masculinity.

One of the common diseases related to the male reproductive system is prostate cancer. The prostate is a small walnut-shaped gland of the male reproductory system. It lies below the bladder, in front of the rectum. It surrounds the urethra that lets the urine flow out of the body. The fluid secreted by prostate nourishes sperm and carries it from the testicles to the urethra during ejaculation. Though the prostate gland grows in size naturally as men age, it may start growing uncontrollably and abnormally due to the mutation leading to prostate cancer which needs to be medically attended. It can be due to smoking, obesity, consumption of high level of calcium or sedentary lifestyle.

Prostate cancer symptoms are: –

Trouble starting and stopping while urinating, along with interrupted flow or velocity in urine stream

– Burning and pain while urinating

– Frequent urges to urinate at night

– Loss of bladder control – Flow of blood while urinating

– Flow of blood while urinating

– Blood in semen

– Pain while ejaculating

– Difficulty in having erection

– Pain in back, thighs, hips, shoulders and other bones making it susceptible to fractures in some cases

– Swelling in legs and pelvic area A doctor must be consulted immediately if the prolonged pain is experienced.

In severe cases, one can check affordable surgery packages online for treatment options. Prostate cancer surgery or prostatectomy surgery is performed where the surgeon removes the prostate gland and some of the tissues, lymph nodes and seminal vesicles i.e. the tube that carries semen. This kind of surgery is known as radical prostatectomy.

There are three types of prostatectomy surgery:

1. Open/Radical prostatectomy – An 8-10 cm incision is made near the belly button. Here, the prostate gland is removed and the neck of the urethra is attached to the urinary bladder instead. The aim here is to remove the tissue in a way that eliminates cancer but minimizes the damage to critical surrounding structures like the nerve that enables erectile function and muscles that hold urinary continence. This surgery can leave a scar on the belly.

2. Laparoscopic prostatectomy = several small incisions are made by the surgeon in this type of surgery. Here again, radical prostatectomy is performed but from outside, i.e. surgical tools and camera lenses are inserted through the incisions which thereby enables the surgeon to view the entire operation on a video screen.

Since camera lens enables the magnification inside the body, nerves and vessels are magnified which makes it easier to save them from the risk of impotence. It also has a shorter recovery time.

3. Robot-assisted laparoscopic prostatectomy = this type of surgery is performed by a surgeon sitting on a console that is connected to a three-four robot with cables. The robot cannot function on its own and hence requires a surgeon to control it. It’s 3 – dimensional screen provides a magnified depiction of the body, which enables precision while performing the surgery as it filters the chances of hand tremors while performing the surgery. Patients are usually discharged after 24 hours of the surgery and regular activity can be resumed in one to two weeks. Sexual activity is advised to be restrained for four weeks after prostatectomy. Increasing awareness about this disease must be spread so that more people can address this disease at its preliminary stage and undergo prostate cancer treatment.

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