Prostate cancer is the 2nd most common among men, second only to non-melanoma skin cancer. Throughout the month of November, there is the national campaign “Novembro Azul”, whose objective is to guide the male population on the importance of prevention and early detection of prostate and penile cancer.
The g1 talked to a urologist to find out the importance of making the medical care, the ideal age to begin taking the exam, as well as guidance on symptoms and prevention.
The president of the Brazilian Society of Oncology Surgery (SBCO) and oncology surgeon in Juiz de Fora, Alexandre Ferreira Oliveira, advises on the importance of making an early diagnosis.
“Many times the patient with prostate cancer is asymptomatic, that’s why the importance of having the exam after the age of 40, having a late diagnosis, the chances of cure are smaller. The most incident age is 50 and 60 years, and above 80 years the chances of having prostate cancer are more than 50%. Regarding the follow-up, in the initial phase we have a chance of cure in more than 90% of the cases, which is why the importance of taking the blood test and the rectal exam, both complement each other in the diagnosis”, he concluded.
Prostate cancer is nothing more than the disordered and disorganized growth of the prostate, a gland present in men that produces seminal fluid, responsible for nourishing sperm.
After non-melanoma skin cancer, prostate cancer is the most common tumor in men. According to the National Cancer Institute (Inca), 65,840 new cases are expected for 2021, but many may not even have been diagnosed.
According to urologist Vinícius Mesquita, periodic medical examination and follow-up are the main attitudes for an early diagnosis and, consequently, a cure.”The test is very important, especially to identify prostate cancer in the early stages of the disease, where therapeutic options for a cure are more feasible. It is important to remember that prostate cancer is the second in incidence in the male population, only behind prostate cancer. skin” said Vinícius.
Family history of prostate cancer in father, brother or uncle; black men and obesity are one of the risk factors for developing the disease.
As the specialist, the exams must be done from 45 years old by men, even without the presence of symptoms.
“The current recommendations of the Brazilian Society of Urology are to start urological monitoring for this purpose in people with a family history of prostate cancer and black people due to the higher incidence of prostate cancer in this group. For the rest of the male population, it is indicated to start from 50 years old,” explained the expert.
In the initial stage, prostate cancer has no symptoms and when some signs begin to appear, about 95% of tumors are already in an advanced stage, making it difficult to cure. In the advanced stage, the symptoms are:
- bone pain;
- pain when urinating;
- desire to urinate frequently;
- presence of blood in urine and/or semen.
“The big issue that strengthens the indication of preventive monitoring with urology is exactly the fact that prostate cancer does not show symptoms until very advanced stages where the possibility of disseminated disease is incurable is already high. with specific treatment it is possible, prostate cancer does not present any symptoms,” said the specialist.
How to prevent?
Although no cancer is totally suitable for prevention, some lifestyle habits such as a balanced diet, regular physical exercise, and control of body weight are factors that can contribute to the prevention of the disease.
“There is no strong evidence that any specific type of food reduces the chances of developing prostate cancer, but a healthy lifestyle, avoiding obesity, smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, are protective factors for men,” added the doctor.
Demand Falls During Covid-19 Pandemic Nationwide
Data released by the Brazilian Society of Urology (SBU) on Monday (1) show that the Covid-19 pandemic impacted surgeries to remove the prostate for cancer. According to the SBU, there was a reduction of 21.5% in the comparison between 2019 and 2020.
In addition to treatment, the diagnosis of the disease also suffered from the pandemic – there was a 27% drop in PSA tests and 21% in prostate biopsies. The number of urological consultations in the Unified Health System (SUS) also dropped by 33.5%.
The November Blue campaign completes a decade this month and aims to alert the male population of Brazil about health care.