Ignorance isn’t bliss

2019-04-03 06:01
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PROSTATE cancer affects one in six South African men.

While most common in men over the age of 50, it is not unheard of for men to be diagnosed in their 20s. It is so prevalent that, theoretically, two men in every rugby team or one man in every soccer team will have it.

If detected early, prostate cancer has a 98% survival rate. This falls to 26% if detected in later stages when symptoms finally start to surface.

Few men experience early-stage prostate cancer symptoms and even fewer talk to their doctors or go for regular screenings.

Early detection is key and starts with a simple blood test from the age of 40, especially if you are of African descent or have a family history of prostate cancer.

A Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) test can determine your level of PSA — a protein produced by normal and cancerous prostate cells.

PSA levels tend to rise when there’s a problem with your prostate health, including the development and growth of prostate cancer.

PSA testing can detect early-stage prostate cancer and spare men with low-risk prostate cancer from intrusive tests and procedures. Scientists believe that this simple blood test can prevent up to 70% of potentially painful and unnecessary biopsies.

Ignorance isn’t bliss, especially when it comes to your health and quality of life. Keep it simple with one yearly check-up and a closer eye on the following­ symptoms:

• A frequent need to urinate

• Painful or burning urination

• A weak or interrupted flow of urine

• Difficulty starting or stopping urination

• Difficulty in having an erection

• Painful ejaculation

• Blood in the urine or semen

• Pain in the lower back, hips or upper thighs

Getting tested once a year can make all the difference in the world.

Visit Here4You for essential information and hope at every stage of prostate cancer.

— Supplied.

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