While there is no sure way to prevent prostate cancer, there are ways you can help lower your risk. At Central Maine Healthcare, we offer the education you need to stay on top of your health, plus dedicated prevention and early detection tools to catch the disease early.
Prostate Cancer Screening
Central Maine Healthcare encourages men ages older than 50 to get annual prostate cancer screenings, which can help catch this common condition early, when it can be closely monitored or treated. African-American men and those with a family history of prostate cancer should be screened sooner, typically by age 40 or 45. We offer routine screenings, including a prostate-screening antigen (PSA) blood test and digital rectal exam (DRE) to check the prostate for any abnormalities.
Know Your Prostate Cancer Risk Factors
About one in seven men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime. Researchers don’t know the exact cause of the disease, but have found certain risk factors that may contribute. Many factors are beyond your control:
- Age: Prostate cancer is rare in men younger than 40, but the chance rises rapidly after age 50. About six in 10 cases are found in men older than 65.
- Race: African-American men are at greater risk than Caucasian men and are twice as likely to die from the disease.
- Nationality: Prostate cancer is most common in North America and northwestern Europe and less common in Asia, Africa, Central America and South America.
- Family history: Having a father or brother with prostate cancer more than doubles a man’s risk of developing this disease.
Fortunately, there are some things you can do that may help lower your risk and enhance your overall health, including being physically active, maintaining a healthy weight and eating right. The American Cancer Society recommends a diet low in red meats (especially those high in fat) and high in vegetables, fruits and grains. Some studies also suggest that taking 50 mg of vitamin E daily can lower the risk of prostate cancer.
Take Control with Our Prevention and Detection Programs
If you think you may be at higher risk for prostate cancer, or just want to stay proactive, we offer comprehensive prevention and screening services at all three Central Maine Healthcare.
[Genetic Cancer Counseling
About 5 to 10% of all prostate cancers diagnosed are hereditary. A man with a father or brother who has been diagnosed is twice as likely to develop prostate cancer as a man with no family history of the disease.
Recent studies have also begun to identify inherited gene changes that may increase a man’s risk for prostate cancer, though there is not current genetic testing available. But, if you have a strong family history of the disease, our genetic cancer counselors can address any concerns and help you manage your risk.