Prostate cancer occurs in the prostate gland, a walnut-sized organ in the male pelvis. It surrounds the urethra (urinary pipe) and makes a fluid that is part of semen.
Prostate cancer is more common in men over the age of 55 and the incidence increases with age. Prostate cancer seems to be more common in African-American men than in Caucasian men, and the risk can also be higher if there is a family history in an immediate relative (father, brother), or in any relative diagnosed at a young age.
Prostate cancer may not cause any symptoms, but can also cause urinary frequency in the day and night, difficulty urinating or difficulty with erections, blood in the urine or semen, lower back, hip, upper thigh pain. It is important to know many of these symptoms can occur from benign (non-cancer) prostatic enlargement as well.
A diagnosis may be suspected on screening with a digital rectal exam (DRE) and a PSA (prostate specific antigen) blood test, but mostly needs confirmation on a biopsy of the prostate, usually done with an ultrasound through the rectum.
Treatment options depend on the level of the prostate cancer and may include Active Surveillance (AS), surgery, radiation, or medical therapy (such as hormone therapy or chemotherapy). Our surgical team has performed over 2000 minimally invasive surgeries for conditions of the prostate using the DaVinci® Robotic system.
As with all of our cancer patients, we employ a multidisciplinary approach, with urologists, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists, radiologists, and clinical trial specialists to determine the full spectrum of treatment options available and most suitable for an individual patient.
To find a urology specialist,
MedStar Washington Hospital Center
110 Irving Street, NW
Washington, DC 20010