The cause of prostate cancer:

@jasjon (252)
December 20, 2006 8:55pm CST
There is no single cause of prostate cancer. The cancer originates in the epithelial cells of the glandular elements of the prostate. As with most cancers defects in the DNA of the cell are central to the development of prostate cancer. Multiple DNA defects are required for cancer to develop. This multi-step process takes place over time. Some defects can be inherited, while others are acquired during the patient's lifetime. Prostate cancer is exceedingly rare before the age of 40, but 1 in 8 men between the ages of 60 and 80 years suffer from the disease. 9% of all prostate cancers are caused by a genetic susceptibility, probably inherited via chromosome 1. These genetically related cancers tend to present at a relatively younger age. Testosterone and its active metabolite dihydrotestosterone are essential for prostate cancer to develop, but does not actually cause prostate cancer. Men who are castrated at a young age do not develop prostate cancer. Symptoms Related to the primary tumor: * Asymptomatic * Poor stream * Retention of urine * Urgency * Frequency * Hematuria (blood in the urine) Related to secondary tumor deposits: * Bone pain (back and pelvis): * Pathological fractures * Enlarged lymph glands * Kidney failure Related to the general effects of malignancy: * Weight loss * Tiredness * Malaise * Anemia * Loss of appetite Early prostate cancer is usually completely asymptomatic. By the time that prostate cancer becomes bothersome or clinically apparent it has usually spread beyond the confines of the prostatic capsule and is no longer amenable to cure. In the first world early prostate cancer is usually diagnosed following screening. Prostate cancer can also be a chance finding in the tissue removed by transurethral resection for suspected benign prostatic enlargement. The primary tumor can cause lower urinary tract symptoms similar to benign prostatic hyperplasia. Obstructive symptoms include poor stream, incomplete emptying and straining while passing urine. Irritative symptoms include dysuria, frequency, urgency and nocturia. Prostate cancer can also cause blood in the urine but this is not common. Prostate cancer typically spreads to the bony skeleton and the lymph glands of the pelvis. Bony metastases commonly involve the lower spine and pelvic girdle causing backache. Lymphatic involvement can cause swelling of the legs and obstruction of the drainage tubes of the kidneys (ureters). Prostate cancer can cause renal failure by ureteric obstruction or by bladder outlet obstruction.
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