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The Prostate Gland

This endocrine gland is only found in men and is chiefly associated with sexual functioning. It is located in the pelvis, just below the bladder and is formed around part of the urethra (a membranous tube through which urine - from the bladder – and semen is discharged). Two ejaculatory ducts also pass through the prostate. These ducts originate in the vas deferens, end in the urethra and carry seminal fluid.

prostate Schematic of where the prostate gland is situated

PLEASE NOTE

Our prostate test kit has NOT been evaluated or approved by the USA FDA and is not registered in America. For that reason it is NOT SOLD in the USA.  

It does however meet CE (European Union) standards and is sold and used in Europe.  


On this page

General information prostate

The prostate is small at birth, but enlarges rapidly during puberty when it achieves its adult size. It is acorn shaped and is made up of muscles and glands. The prostate is divided into a number of lobes: a lobe containing mostly muscle to the front, two lobes (lateral lobes) to the sides, a lobe in the middle and a lobe to the back – where prostate cancer usually starts to manifest.

When a man is sexually aroused, the gland produces an alkaline fluid, which enters the urethra through various small ducts. The fluid mixes with the rest of the fluids in the semen, which is excreted through the opening of the urethra on the tip of the penis during ejaculation. In a healthy male, this alkaline fluid comprises at least a third of the seminal fluid, and it is this fluid that gives semen its characteristic odor.

Diseases of the Prostate gland prostate

Prostatism – also known as Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) prostate

Definition: Non-cancerous (benign) enlargement of the prostate gland, causing difficulty in urination.

The most common type of tumor found in men, responsible for a few of the urinary symptoms found in men over the age of 50.

Current research shows that 20-30% of men require surgical or medical intervention for this problem before the age of 80.

home prostate test kit

Causes of Prostatism prostate

The enlargement of the prostate is not uncommon in men, which may cause later problems when urinating, as the prostate then places pressure on the urethra, which is the tube that carries the flow of urine from the bladder, through the prostate. The cause is not known, but diet and the general physical condition of the patient is speculated to play a role in the development of the condition.

Symptoms of Prostatism prostate

  • Waiting a long time, or hesitancy, before urinating
  • Weak urine stream
  • Intermittent stream of urine
  • Feeling as if the bladder is still full, even though you cannot urinate any longer
  • Frequent need to urinate
  • Having to urinate often during the night
  • Wanting to urinate, but not being able to – retention of urine

The above-mentioned symptoms may vary from person to person.

Diagnosing Prostatism

Your doctor will most probably perform a digital rectal examination and order a prostate specific antigen (PSA) blood test to check for prostate cancer. A prostate specific antigen test (PSA) will often return positive when this condition is present. It must be noted that this does not mean that any cancer is present.

Treatment of Prostatism

Many men display various symptoms and this leads to difficulty in diagnosis, making it difficult for a doctor to decide who should be treated and how the treatment should progress. If there is any doubt, the patient will be referred to an urologist (a specialist doctor) for an extra opinion.

However, once this is diagnosed and treatment does start, it could include one of the following treatment options:

Open Surgery

If the prostate gland is very enlarged and is causing problems, open surgery may be the only option, as other treatment options may not be found to be effective.

Although there are other ways to approach the surgery, the surgeon will most probably make an incision in the stomach and remove the prostate gland through this incision.

Transurethral Resection of the Prostate (TURP) prostate

This is a surgical procedure, in which a scope is inserted through the urethra at the tip of the penis, removing a part of the obstructing tissue, to improve the flow of urine.

This operation is usually done under general anesthetic, where you are put under general anesthetic, or spinal anesthetic, where you still feel no pain but are still conscious.

The operation usually lasts an hour, in which a resectoscope, a thin tube with a tiny camera and a wire loop carrying an electric current, is inserted into the urethra.

The wire loop is used to break off pieces of the enlarged tissue causing the obstruction, while the bladder is flushed with a sterile solution to wash way all the matter that is broken off.

The resectoscope is also used to stop bleeding after the matter has been broken off – a different electrical current is used to stem the bleeding.

This procedure is found to be effective, although it does have the same risks associated with any type of surgical procedure.

home prostate test kit

Photoselective Vaporization

This procedure is similar to TURP, but utilizes green light laser (light) energy to remove tissue. It is found that this procedure is effective when used on smaller growths and that there is less bleeding and a faster recovery time, when using this procedure.

Medicinal Treatments

Other non-invasive treatments have been developed, which use various medicines, which either relax the neck of the bladder, and/or cause the prostate to shrink. These treatments are also found to be effective, but not as effective as TURP or Photoselective vaporization.

Watchful Waiting

It may be that the symptoms and condition of the prostate are not that severe and a doctor may decide to simply wait and see if the symptoms become more severe, requiring intervention. Regular check-ups will probably be recommended.

Prostatitis prostate

This complaint may account for up to 25% of all visits to the doctor, by men, complaining of problems with genital or urinary symptoms.

This term actually refers to four different conditions, known as: Acute Bacterial Prostatitis Chronic Bacterial Prostatitis Chronic Prostatitis or Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndrome Asymptomatic Inflammatory Prostatitis

Acute Bacterial Prostatitis

Although very uncommon, this form of prostatitis is said to be easy to diagnose and treat.

This disease usually shows symptoms such as: Chills Fever Pain in the lower back and genitals Frequent need to urinate, also at night Painful or burning sensation when urinating Body aches and pains Urinary tract infection

The condition is usually treated successfully with antibiotics.

Chronic Bacterial Prostatitis

This is also very uncommon, but the same symptoms as above are displayed. However, the symptoms reoccur regularly, even after treatment with antibiotics.

It is found that this is caused by a defect in the prostate, which causes a continual infection.

Treatment usually comprises the surgical removal of the defect and then treatment with antibiotics, although antibiotics are sometimes found not to be of benefit.

Chronic Prostatitis/Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndrome

This condition is found to be most common and effects men of any age, symptoms coming and going without warning. It may present as inflammatory or non-inflammatory.

Inflammatory chronic prostatitis usually shows the urine, semen and other fluids to contain cells that the body uses to fight infection, but no infecting organism. Non-inflammatory chronic prostatitis shows the fluids to contain no evidence of inflammation or infecting organism.

Another condition, known as asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis is usually diagnosed where the patient does not complain of any symptoms, but infection-fighting cells are present in his semen and urine. These cells are usually found when a doctor is looking for causes of infertility or testing for prostate cancer.

Prostate Cancer prostate

Prostate cancer is the development of malignant cells in the prostate gland, where the normally healthy cells in the gland mutate and start to multiply, causing a growth or a tumor. This mutation may spread to other body parts. If it spreads, this form of cancer seems to target the bones (usually the hips, lower spine and ribs) and lymph nodes.

It is found that this form of cancer usually develops in men over the age of 50, and for this reason an examination of the prostate is usually included in a yearly medical check up.

The prevalence of prostate cancer differs around the world, and research shows that it is least common in South and East Asia progressing to more common in Europe and the most common in the United States and other Western Countries. An interesting study links this difference in prevalence to the common national diet in the areas concerned:

home prostate test kit

It was found that:

  • Lowest cancer rate:
    • Asian countries follow a low calorie diet, with the consumption of soy-based foods.
  • Medium cancer rate:
    • Europe (Mediterranean region) consumes food with cancer protective elements, such as fruit, vegetables, oil and seafood
  • High cancer rate:
    • USA and other western countries follow a diet including high calorie food, high red meat and fat contents. REFERENCE 1

Post mortem and related investigation has shown that many men have prostate cancer, but do not manifest symptoms, do not undergo any therapy, but eventually die of other unrelated causes. This however does not imply that prostate tests should not be performed, and that prostate problems should not be treated, as prostate cancer may be particularly aggressive and should be treated and diagnosed as early as possible.

Genetics and diet have been proven as causes of prostate cancer.

Prostate cancer can be insidious, taking years to develop and may only be detected after 10 years. However, some cases manifest a very aggressive form and the cancer may spread much quicker.

Symptoms of Prostate Cancer prostate

The proliferation of malignant cells in the prostate causes the prostate to enlarge and this can put pressure on the urethra.

If pressure is placed on the urethra, the following symptoms may manifest:

  • Increased need to urinate frequently
  • Waking up through the night to urinate
  • Urine flow hesitancy (having to wait for the flow of urine to begin)
  • An urgent need to urinate
  • Pain while urinating
  • Blood in the urine
  • Hip and/or lower back pain
  • Inability to achieve or sustain an erection

PLEASE NOTE: These symptoms are indicative of problems with the prostate, but do not necessarily mean that prostate cancer is present.

The symptoms may also indicate:

A prostate infection (prostatitis) Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) – a benign enlargement of the prostate.

It is important to stress that you should pay your doctor a visit if you have any of these symptoms, as the earlier this is treated the better, whatever the reason. It must also be noted that all men who are over 50 years of age (but preferably any man over 40) should have a prostate cancer test regularly, regardless of whether they manifest the above-mentioned symptoms or not.

home prostate test kit

Cause of Prostate Cancer prostate

The reason for the development of cancer is still unknown and is being researched aggressively, as cancer in any form is one of the major scourges of the modern world. Why cells mutate and then begin to multiply is still a mystery and a cure seems to be a long way off.

It is known, however, that there may be a genetic reason for prostate cancer, and that other environmental factors may have an influence.

There seems to be a relatively small risk of you developing prostate cancer if your brother or father has or had it.

Diet and lifestyle definitely play a role, as vegetarians seem to be at lower risk than meat eaters. It has been reported that a vegetarian could have a 50% less risk of contracting prostate cancer. REFERENCE 15

Current research into the influences that lifestyle and diet have on prostate cancer shows marked difference in the occurrence of this type of cancer according to the geographical area researched. A link has been established between a diet high in saturated fats, high glycaemic content and red meat and a higher occurrence of prostate cancer. This link is especially prevalent when high levels of testosterone are present, making the risk even higher. It is also found that if the level of testosterone is reduced the cancer present in the prostate is starved and is also found to reduce.

Other Points of Interest

Prostate cancer is not infectious and cannot be transferred through sex, anal or otherwise. Although smoking causes other forms of cancer, there is as yet no established link between smoking and cancer of the prostate.

home prostate test kit

Preventing Prostate Cancer prostate

Many studies have been performed on the relation between prostate cancer and diet, and it seems that the best way to prevent prostate cancer is through eating healthily, drastically limiting the intake of red meat and animal fat and increasing the intake of soy products, fruit and raw vegetables.

The effect of lycopene (contained in tomatoes, specifically tomato extract and paste) also seems to have a beneficial effect in the prevention of prostate cancer.

The prevalence of prostate cancer differs around the world, and research shows that it is least common in South and East Asia progressing to more common in Europe and the most common in the United States and other Western Countries. An interesting study links this difference in prevalence to the common national diet in the areas concerned:

It was found that:

  • Lowest cancer rate:
    • Asian countries follow a low calorie diet, with a large consumption of soy based foods.
  • Medium cancer rate:
    • Europe (Mediterranean region) consumes food with cancer protective elements, such as fruit, vegetables, oil and seafood
  • High cancer rate:
    • USA and other western countries follow a diet including high calorie food, high red meat and fat contents. REFERENCE 1

Other nutritional ways to help prostate

Notes on other studies related to the use of various food sources, vitamins and aspirin in the prevention of prostate cancer:

  • Prostate cancer risk was studied in relation to the intake of fruit, vegetables, beta-carotene (type of vitamin A derivative – found in carrots) and retinol. A decreased prostate cancer risk was detected with increased intakes of vitamin C vegetables, including bell peppers and broccoli. Other vegetables and vitamin A intake did not seem to effect the development of prostate cancer. 2. A study suggests that the long term use of adult strength aspirin is associated with a moderately reduced risk of cancers, including prostate cancer. REFERENCE 2
  • The protective effects of phytochemicals, specifically citrus nobiletin and auraptene (obtainable from most citrus fruits), specifically nobiletin, may prevent the development of prostate cancer, according to a study done at the Nagoya City University Graduate School of Medical Sciences. REFERENCE 3
  • The Lobund Institute in Notre Dame, Indiana did a study on rats, which proved that a soy-based diet prevents the development of prostate cancer. REFERENCE 4
  • Rats were fed a diet of broccoli and tomato powder-lycopene powder by the Division of Nutritional Sciences and Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at the University of Illinois, to discover any link between this diet and the reduction of prostate tumors. The conclusion of the study was that the increased intake of various plant components reduces the risk of prostate cancer. REFERENCE 5
  • In a study done at the Department of Thoracic Surgery, University of L'Aquila, G. Mazzini Hospital, Teramo, Italy, it is suggested that that all forms of cancer can be prevented by a diet low in red meat and high in fibre. They also suggest that fruit, vegetables and the correct percentage of Omega 3 and 6 fats may lower the risk of cancer. It is stated in the study that protective elements in a cancer preventive diet include selenium, folic acid, vitamin B12, vitamin D, chlorophyll and antioxidants, such as carotenoids (alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, lycopene, lutein and cryptoxanthin). It is also noted that ascorbic acid, administered intravenously is effective. Supplementary use of probiotics and digestive enzymes is also suggested as preventing cancer. REFERENCE 6

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  • There is potentially an important role for vitamin D in the prevention and treatment of cancer. This study mentions a reduction in the risk of developing prostate cancer through using vitamin D, or consuming foods high in vitamin D. REFERENCE 7
  • The division of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Illinois, presented evidence in a study on lycopene (a potent anti-oxidant carotenoid, found in tomatoes) that suggested that lycopene may be responsible for the reduced risk of prostate cancer seen in men who eat lots of tomatoes and tomato products. Gaps are however also identified in research. REFERENCE 8
  • An article translated from German found that most studies into prostate cancer indicate that a diet high in red meat, dairy, animal fats and low physical activity is related to a higher risk of prostate cancer. Obesity is also considered to possibly heighten the risk and progression of prostate cancer. Interestingly, it is suggested in this article that a consumption of tomato products, soy, lycopene, selenium, marine omega 3 fatty acids and vitamin E in smokers is linked to prostate cancer, while most studies prove that a diet including high amounts of these substances delays and prevents cancer. We therefore suggest that it is essential to stop smoking in any case, to prevent this occurring. It is also mentioned that supplementation with tomato products and selenium showed a delay in the disease. The article also states that application of selenium during chemo or radiotherapy probably also reduces therapy related toxicity and may improve the effect of standard therapy on cells. REFERENCE 9
  • The Department of Nutritional Sciences, Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto publishes an article mentioning the positive effects of lycopene (a powerful anti-oxidant found in tomatoes) in the effective prevention of chronic diseases. REFERENCE 10
  • A reduction in PSA levels was caused by the ingestion of 50g of tomato paste once a day over 10 consecutive weeks. The conclusion by this study was that a reduction in the prostate specific antigen (PSA) level suggests an impact in the progression of prostate cancer or benign prostate hyperplasia. REFERENCE 11
  • An article published in Lucknow, India, by the Department of Urology and Renal Transplantation, Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences, confirms finding that lycopene helps in preventing prostate cancer. It also mentions that there are conflicting studies on lycopene and prostate cancer. It is suggested that all the large studies have concluded that lycopene does prevent prostate cancer and suggests that further large trials be conducted. REFERENCE 12
  • An inverse relationship between serum vitamin D and human tumor incidence is demonstrated in various studies, according to the Department of Pathophysiology at the Medical University of Vienna. The article also suggests that an elevated intake of dietary calcium, phytoestrogens and folate have a positive role in tumor prevention. It is noted that these substances maintain an efficient synthesis of the hormone calcitriol (an active metabolite of vitamin D), which has an antiproliferative, prodifferentiating and propoptotic activity in prostate cancer. REFERENCE 13
  • The prevention of prostate cancer is conceivable, according to an article published by the Service d'urologie CHUV, Lausanne. They note that weight control, through a balanced diet, rich in lycopene, soya beans, omega 3 acid, selenium, vitamin E, physical and sexual activity and no smoking are without risks, efficient and commendable. REFERENCE 14

Diagnosing Prostate Cancer prostate

When diagnosing prostate cancer the following techniques are mostly used:

  • A digital rectal examination (DRE)
  • A prostate specific antigen (PSA) blood test and if necessary
  • A biopsy

A doctor will usually recommend a biopsy only if there is good reason to suspect prostate cancer.

A GP will probably refer a patient with prostate cancer to an urologist, who specializes in the treatment of this disease.

home prostate test kit

Digital Rectal Examination (DRE) prostate

Although most men find this embarrassing and unpleasant, it is very necessary. A doctor is trained to be professional and will consider the unpleasantness and make the whole visit as comfortable as possible. The examination is usually very fast and painless.

The examination will be performed after the doctor places his or her hand in a sterile glove and lubricates a finger. The doctor will then insert a finger into your rectum and feel the prostate gland to check its size or shape and if there are any lumps present.

Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) Blood Test prostate

This antigen is produced exclusively by the prostate gland, and is found in human serum (derived from whole blood), or in whole blood. The normal total PSA concentration in the male human is 0.1-2.6 ng/ml. The word “normal” is used with caution however, as the levels of PSA may differ from one person to another. PSA levels may be raised by certain other conditions of the prostate and by other actions, causing a “false” reading.

home prostate test kit

The following may raise PSA levels

  • Sexual Intercourse or ejaculation – a PSA test should only be performed more than 24 hours after sex or ejaculation.
  • A DRE (digital rectal examination) may cause a slight rise in PSA levels. A DRE should always be done after a PSA test is done.
  • Anal sex, or other stimulation of the prostate may also cause raised levels of PSA – a 24 hour waiting period is called for, before doing a PSA test.
  • Prostatitis or lower urinary tract symptoms may also cause heightened levels of PSA.
  • BPH (benign hypertrophy or enlargement of the prostate) may also cause high PSA levels.
  • Although a raised level of prostate specific antigen may not be indicative of prostate cancer, use of this test has led to an increase in detection of prostate cancer and other prostate problems, and may have caused the rate of deaths from prostate cancer to drop. REFERENCE 16

Biopsy prostate

A prostate biopsy may be recommended by your urologist, if:

  • A digital rectal examination finds a lump or enlargement of the prostate, A PSA blood test shows heightened levels of the antigen in the blood, Or a combination of the above results
  • Small samples of prostate tissue will be taken and studied under a microscope, to find any evidence of cancer, the cause of the lump or growth in the prostate, or the reason for an elevation in PSA (prostate specific antigen).

Your urologist (specialist doctor) may decide to perform one of the following biopsies:

A transrectal biopsy is the most common method, where a thin needle is inserted through the rectum to obtain tissue samples. A biopsy may also be taken through the urethra, using the same method, or through the perineum (the area in-between the legs, scrotum and the anus).

home prostate test kit

Treatments for prostate cancer prostate

A malignant prostate tumor, which is a development and accumulation of malignant cancerous cells in the prostate, can be localized, and this form can often be cured. The tumor is most often removed or treated by various methods. The age, state of health of the patient, the progression of the cancer and whether the cancer has spread to other body parts will be taken into consideration when developing a treatment plan.

home prostate test kit

Gleason Grade prostate

Therapy may be determined by a grade given to the tumor during a biopsy. This grading is called the “Gleason Grade” - The Gleason Grade ranges from 1 to 10 - a grade of 2 representing the least aggressive form of cancer and a grade of 10 representing the most aggressive.

High grade cancers will most probably be treated aggressively by radiation or surgery, while a low grade might be left alone, with the development (if any) of the cancer being continuously observed, in a period known as “watchful waiting”.

Although this is not a complete list of the types of therapy that may be used to treat prostate cancer, we found the following types to be the most common, or worthy of noting.

Different therapies may be combined, for example, hormone therapy and radiotherapy:

  • Prostatectomy
  • Radiotherapy
  • Proton Therapy
  • Brachytherapy
  • Hormone Therapy
  • Cryosurgery
  • Watchful Waiting

Prostatectomy prostate

This term is used for a surgical procedure that removes all or part of the prostate.

In a radical prostatectomy, the surgeon removes the entire prostate and then reconnects the urethra to the bladder.

Side Effects

A skilled surgeon is required for this operation, as nerve bundles surround the prostate, and if these are damaged there is a strong possibility that erectile dysfunction will be a result – in fact it is generally found that 70% of patients undergoing this procedure experience some form of or total erectile dysfunction.

Incontinence is also a common side effect of this operation. Reports show that 40% of patients are seen to experience slight incontinence (some dribbling) and 2% have to wear incontinence pads, as they loose total control of urination.

While taking the side effects into consideration, surgery is still found to be the most effective way of dealing with prostate cancer, if it is localized to the prostate.

home prostate test kit

Radiotherapy prostate

This method is found to be effective on contained or localized cancer.

There are many different forms of radiotherapy, varying the type of radiation used, combining it with other therapies or modulating the rays used. Many are still in the development stage or are new developments, and much research is continually being done to minimize the side effects of this treatment, and improve its effectiveness.

Radiotherapy involves different types of radiation and methods of radiation, such as proton and ion beam radiation treatment, intensity modulated radiotherapy, stereotactic radiotherapy, radiosurgery, radiotherapy with oxygen etc, and your urologist may ask you to consider one of these treatments.

Radiation treatment can also be adapted to suit your lifestyle, but this depends on the prognosis of your cancer and the treatment plan which will be taken to treat the cancer.

  • External Beam Radiotherapy
    • Radioactive beams are focused on the prostate to destroy the malignant cells. The drawback is that these beams do not know the difference between healthy cells and cancerous cells, so the beam has to be focused as tightly on the prostate as possible.
    • Side Effects
    • The most common side effects experienced during radiation treatment of the prostate are the following:
    • Temporary Side Effects
      • Irritable Bladder Diarrhea Skin Irritation
      • These side effects usually present during radiation treatment, but it is reported that they ease after treatment has stopped.
      • Irritable bladder
      • This is caused by the radiation inflaming the tissue in the bladder.
      • A frequent need to urinate and a burning sensation when urinating are the most common symptoms.
      • It is found that taking in more fluids will help lessen the symptoms, but tea and coffee are not recommended. It is recommended that you discuss this with your doctor, as certain types of fluid will aggravate the condition, or may conflict with certain drugs you may be taking.
      • Diarrhea
      • This is caused by radiation irritating the bowel.
      • This may get progressively worse as treatment continues, but following a diet, which avoids whole grains and spicy and fatty foods, will help. It is found that eating banana’s eases diarrhea. This should also be discussed with your doctor.
      • Skin irritation
      • This may occur, especially on the skin between the legs. Tell your radiographer or doctor about this, as they may be able to adjust the direction of the rays, or your doctor may recommend a cessation of treatment for a while.
    • The following side effects occur and may be permanent:
      • Proctitis Urinary Problems Impotence or Erectile Dysfunction
      • Proctitis
      • Proctitis is a common long-term side effect. You feel as if you want to strain during a bowel movement, even though you do not need to go to the toilet. There may be bleeding from the rectum, severe or slight, and a mucous discharge.
      • Urinary Problems
      • The radiation may cause a tightening, or stricture, in the urethra, causing difficulty in urinating, or preventing urination.
      • This is correctable and the stricture can be stretched in a short-term procedure, to enable the urine to pass freely through the urethra.
      • Impotence or Erectile Dysfunction
      • Radiotherapy may damage the nerves found around the prostate, causing permanent problems with achieving an erection.
      • It is found in some cases that Cialis, Viagra, or a similar drug may help correct this problem, if the drugs are taken soon after radiotherapy.
  • 3D Conformal Radiotherapy
    • This is a method of radiotherapy using computerized technology. The coordinates of the prostate, the size, shape and position are fed into the computer, which then shapes the beams more precisely and limits damage to the surrounding area.
    • Side Effects
      • As the radiation beams are more focused, it is found that the side effects to this procedure are more limited, but the same side effects as normal radiotherapy are also reported.
      • It is found that only 40% of patients develop impotence and around 2% of the patients develop incontinence if this method is used.
      • It is noted that more study should be done on these claims however.
  • Proton therapy
    • This is a new type of therapy, normally used for cancer of the eye, but it is also being used and researched on treating spinal cord tumors, sarcomas near the spine or brain and prostate, lung and liver cancer.
    • What is found exciting about this therapy is that it doesn’t aim x-rays at the tumor, but proton beams (protons are the centre part of the atom and carry a positive charge). What is different about this therapy is that protons release their energy when they stop, so they do not damage surrounding tissue, but only target the tumor – delivering a high dose of radiation to the cancer cells.
    • This kills the cancer cells, but limits damage to other tissue, which in turn limits the side effects that usually present in normal external beam radiotherapy.
  • Brachytherapy
    • This is also a type of radiotherapy, but in this type, radioactive seeds are placed within the prostate, delivering radiation directly to the cancer.
    • The procedure is less invasive then surgery, as radioactive seeds are inserted in the prostate through needles, which are in their turn inserted via the rectum.
    • The recovery time after the procedure is relatively fast, with the patient recovering after about 2 to 3 days, after which he is able to continue with his normal activities.
    • Side Effects
      • There is a small chance of a patient becoming impotent after the procedure – around 30%.
      • A burning sensation might be experienced for a few weeks after the procedure.
      • Other side effects are also reported, such as scrotal burning, minimal bleeding in and out of the rectum, incontinence, impotence and reduction in penis size is also sometimes reported.
      • The incontinence, scrotal burning and bleeding are reported to improve within weeks or a few months after the procedure.
      • Some patients have reported a reduction in penis size. Researchers speculate that this may be due to a shortening in the urethra.
home prostate test kit

Hormone Therapy prostate

This therapy is usually considered if the prostate cancer has spread to surrounding tissue.

It is known that prostate cancer requires the hormone, testosterone, to grow and therefore, if the prostate is deprived of testosterone it will starve, causing the tumor to shrink.

This treatment may not completely remove the cancer, but can be used to keep it from progressing for a number of years, easing the pain and urinary symptoms.

This therapy may also be used in conjunction with other therapies, such as brachytherapy, radiotherapy and cryotherapy.

Cryosurgery prostate

This procedure can be coupled with hormone therapy, in which the size of the prostate is first reduced though inhibiting the male hormone, testosterone.

This procedure is supposed to result in the death of the malignant cells in the prostate and destroys the prostate gland by freezing it.

When the prostate gland has reached the required size after the hormone therapy, the patient is placed under either local or general anesthesia. Metal probes are then inserted through the perineum (the area in-between the legs, scrotum and anus) and placed on pre-determined areas of the prostate gland. Liquid nitrogen is then introduced through the probes to freeze the entire gland. An ultra-sound probe monitors the freezing process to ensure that the wall of the rectum is not frozen, while a catheter is placed in the urethra with a warming solution, to ensure that the urethra does not freeze. A Foley catheter is also inserted to ensure the flow of urine. This catheter is usually left in place for two to three weeks after the procedure.

A high incidence of impotence is reported after the procedure, while another common side effect in prostate cancer treatment, incontinence is reported to not be as common as in other treatments. The formation of an anal fistula (abscess in the wall of the rectum) is reported to be a danger.

home prostate test kit

Watchful Waiting

Prostate cancer is sometimes diagnosed, but is still in an early stage, causing little or few symptoms. A doctor may decide that, when taking everything into account, it may be advisable just to wait and monitor the cancer, without doing anything.

Watchful waiting is normally followed when a man is elderly and his cancer grows so slowly that it will not alter his life expectancy. State of health and the severity of symptoms are of course also considered.

Living with Prostate Cancer prostate

Many men live with prostate cancer and die of unrelated causes, without it ever being diagnosed. However, even if no symptoms are reported, there is a very real danger of the cancer spreading to other areas of the body. The aggressiveness of prostate cancer also differs from person to person, so it is wise to go for regular check-ups and to treat the cancer as early as possible.

It is found that the treatment for prostate cancer causes most of the uncomfortable effects experienced with prostate cancer, and it is these side effects that have to be coped with.

Being diagnosed with cancer is a major shock and will frighten anybody.

Depression prostate

Depression is a common reaction to a diagnosis of cancer and should be faced and dealt with, as a positive mental attitude goes a long way in coping with any life threatening disease.

What is found to be of great benefit is open communication. Be realistic about the changes that treating the cancer will make in your life and keep your loved ones informed about your decisions and don’t be afraid to ask for support and help.

Getting involved with a support group may be a good idea – have a look on the Internet, or ask your doctor if there are any in your area. Getting involved with people who have the same problem as you can lead to an exchange of ideas and helpful information regarding treatment options and coping with the changes in your life.

If you feel that you need to see a psychologist, please ask your doctor to put you in contact with one. You may need some help in coping with the shock and to help you keep your attitude positive.

If you experience chronic pain, ask your doctor to refer you to a pain management centre, which will provide you with extra help in dealing with pain.

Two of the major side effects of prostate treatments are incontinence and erectile dysfunction.

Erectile Dysfunction prostate

If you wish to maintain a physical relationship, it is very important to tell your doctor this. Keeping the lines of communication completely open with your doctor is essential, as this will influence the treatment plan.

There are various ways to deal with erectile dysfunction, which would be known to a competent urologist. A visit to a reputable sex clinic is also an option if you are battling with erectile dysfunction.

It is strongly recommended that you approach this problem through your doctor, who will help or recommend a reputable specialist – don’t buy any strange products off the web or from a sex shop, without letting your doctor know, as there is a wealth of medical knowledge available about coping and dealing with this – use your doctors expertise.

home prostate test kit

Incontinence prostate

The embarrassing problem of incontinence may be a great challenge, and you may have to use incontinence pads, but surgery may be able to rectify the problem. An incontinence specialist or nurse may have many good suggestions regarding the problem.

In summary, keep communicating, be realistic and ask questions. Be prepared to change your lifestyle. Contact with other men suffering from prostate cancer will probably prove helpful.

This condition has been with us for thousands of years and there is a wealth of knowledge to be tapped regarding living with this disease and coping with the side effects of treatment.

Cancer can be beaten.

prostate test kit

We sell an affordable and dependable prostate test kit, which checks the PSA level of your blood - for more information please click here.

Our home test kits
Urine test strips - testing for:
:: Glucose
:: Ketones
:: Blood / Hemoglobin
:: Protein
:: Nitrite
:: pH
:: Urobilinogen
:: Bilirubin
:: Leucocytes
:: Specific gravity

Breast Aware (breast examination pad)

Alcohol breathalyzer (disposable)

Ovulation tests (testing fertility periods or periods when you won't conceive)
Malaria test kit - testing for:
:: Plasmodium falciparum (Pf)
:: Plasmodium vivax (Pv)
:: Plasmodium ovale (Po)
:: Plasmodium malariae (Pm)

Prostate test (PSA test)

HIV test /Aids test (testing for HIV 1 and 2 antibodies)

Drug test (5-in-1 assay) testing for:
:: Cocaine (crack and cocaine derivatives)
:: THC (marijuana, weed, grass, hashish etc)
:: Amphetamines (speed, uppers, base)
:: Opiates (morphine, opium, heroin)
:: Methamphetamines (meth, ice, e, ecstasy)

 

Information pages
Urine testing
:: Kidneys and their functions
:: Kidney function regulating body fluids
:: Bilirubin in urine
:: Blood in urine
:: Glucose in urine
:: Ketones in urine
:: Leukocytes in urine
:: Nitrite in urine
:: ph of urine
:: Protein in urine
:: Specific gravity of urine
:: Urobilinogen in urine
:: Parameters of urine test strips (dip sticks)

Drugs
:: Drug detection periods
:: Most common drugs
:: Drug slang words
:: How do drugs work
   ::: Amphetamines - speed, uppers
   ::: Cocaine - crack, nose candy
   ::: Methamphetamine - ecstasy, e, ice
   ::: Opiates - morphine, opium, heroin
   ::: Phencyclidine hydrochloride - pcp, angel dust
   ::: THC - cannabis, marijuana

Breast cancer
:: Description and function of the breasts
:: Diseases of the breast
:: Benign breast conditions
:: Malignant breast conditions
   ::: Types of breast cancer
   ::: Symptoms of breast cancer
:: Causes of breast cancer
:: Diagnosing breast cancer
:: Treatment of breast cancer
:: Living with breast cancer

Prostate health
:: Prostatism or Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)
:: Prostatitis
:: Prostate Cancer
   ::: Symptoms of Prostate Cancer
   ::: Cause of Prostate Cancer
   ::: Diagnosing Prostate Cancer
   ::: Treatment for Prostate Cancer
:: Living with Prostate Cancer
:: Depression
:: Erectile Dysfunction
:: Incontinence
Malaria
:: General information on malaria
:: Types of malaria
:: People at high risk of malaria infection
:: Lifecycle of the plasmodium parasite
:: Preventing malaria
   ::: Protective clothing
   ::: Insect repellent
   ::: Bed / sleeping mosquito nets
   ::: Room management
:: Diagnosing malaria
:: Symptoms of malaria infection
:: Anti-malarial drugs
   ::: Doxycycline
   ::: Mefloquine (Larium™)
   ::: Atovaquone and proguanil combination (Malarone™)
:: Testing for malaria
   ::: Home testing
   ::: Laboratory testing
   ::: Other tests that could be done
:: Consequences and outcome of malaria infection
:: Malaria in Southern and South Africa

HIV / Aids
:: General information
:: Symptoms
:: Facts and frequently asked questions
:: Spreading the virus
   ::: Kissing
   ::: Oral Sex
   ::: Vaginal Sex
   ::: Anal Sex
   ::: Condoms
   ::: Female condoms
   ::: Drug Use
   ::: Tattoos
:: Health care workers and you
:: "Rapid" home Aids Tests
:: Approved drugs and treatments
:: Schematic drawing of life cycle

Ovulation / Fertility
:: Fertility drugs
:: Ovulation calculator (period in which you are most likely to conceive)


  

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Information contained on this website is for general information purposes only and must not be used to treat or diagnose medical conditions, and all health problems must be referred to a health care professional. Statements made regarding the products and general information have not been evaluated by the FDA, or any other health authority, and should not be seen as health counseling, advice or statements.
 
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Our site was last updated on 1 February 2014.