To mark the beginning of Movember, the month of awareness of prostate cancer, the Irish Cancer Society has urged all people over 50 to take half an hour to have a conversation with their doctor about prostate cancer.
Each year over 3300 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer in Ireland, which means that about one in seven men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during their lifetime. However, with improvements in treatments, the five-year survival rate for prostate cancer is now over 90 percent.
Kevin O'Hagan, Cancer Prevention Manager at the Irish Cancer Society, said: "From a historical point of view, there was a tendency to make a PSA test for anyone who was concerned with prostate cancer or who However, new guidelines from the National Cancer Control Program (NCCP) recommended that PSA tests are not used as a general screening for prostate cancer but to confirm a diagnosis or to dictate treatment.
"Rather than insisting on a test, I urge all people over 50 to take some time to have a conversation with their general practitioner. Men over 50 are more at risk of becoming sick and even if they are asymptomatic, it is worth having that chat because early prostate cancer has no symptoms at all. "
"We know that men sometimes try to go to the doctor if they are worried, but prostate cancer is very treatable and the sooner it is detected, the better, that's why men have to have annual examinations, especially if they have a family history of prostate cancer ".
Tom Hope, of Dunboyne, had an annual visit to his doctor (at the age of 62) to check his blood pressure and the doctor took a blood test. About a week later, his doctor reported an increase in PSA reading and referred to a urologist to read the readings.
After a biopsy, the urologist confirmed that he had low-grade prostate cancer, and Tom, after a discussion with the urologist and his family, decided not to do surgery, but opted for active surveillance. This involves regular consultations and blood tests, and a biopsy every three years to check the condition of the cancer.
Tom, who is also a member of the Prostate Cancer Support Group, Men's Against Cancer (MAC), added: "I want to encourage all people to visit and discuss with the doctor every year about their concerns or concerns This is the first step in controlling your health, and if it is a case of diagnosis, it is very important to use patient support groups in the community, and we have found great comfort and support in meeting and talking with other men who have were diagnosed and treated for prostate cancer and lived a normal life 15 years after diagnosis.
There are many people who have had cancer and have had a positive result, especially in prostate cancer. But it is so important to open up and talk about treatment and side effects – it makes you realize that you are not the only one going through it, "he concluded.
Now, nine years later, and after two biopsies, both of which have returned clearly, Tom is happy to report that prostate cancer is under control.
Since 2008, more than 100,000 people have been involved and contributed to the Movember case. Movember Ireland has funded over 30 initiatives in the field of prostate cancer in partnership with the Irish Cancer Society from financial grants to patients and their families to the latest research that united the research community of prostate cancer to improve the results and the quality of life for one in seven Irish men who will have prostate cancer during their lifetime. Sign up now to support men's health, visit the Movember.com page
To talk to a cancer nurse about any aspect of cancer, contact Cancer Nurseline at Freephone 1800 200 700, send an email to [email protected] or join one of the 13 Daffodil Centers in Hospitals at national level. For information about Daffodil Center locations and opening times, please email [email protected] For more information, go to www.cancer.ie