Prostate Cancer Q&A

Module 1: Understanding Prostate Cancer

Q: What is the prostate?
A: The prostate is a walnut-sized gland located below the bladder that is part of a man’s reproductive system. The prostate sits on top of the rectum. The urethra - which allows urine flow - runs through the prostate.
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Q: What is prostate cancer?
A: The prostate can develop cancer and other diseases that only occur in men. Prostate cancer occurs when cells in the prostate grow out of control. Though rare, prostate cancer can spread from the prostate to other parts of the body over time.
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Q: How serious is prostate cancer?
A: The seriousness of prostate cancer depends on the type of cells found in your biopsy, your PSA blood test, whether it has spread outside the prostate, your age, and general health.
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Q: What are prostate cancer stages?
A: Staging is the process used to find out if the cancer has spread within the prostate or to other parts of the body. Stages are determined by your doctor and are from I (1) to IV (4). Tests will tell the doctor what stage you may have. This will then help guide treatment recommendations by your doctor.
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Q: How prostate cancer is treated?
A: There are many ways you and your doctor can treat your prostate cancer. Depending on your case, treatments might include watchful waiting, active surveillance, surgical removal, radiation therapy, medications to lower hormones (hormone therapy), chemotherapy, and immunotherapy.
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Q: When should I get screened for prostate cancer?
A: Ask your doctor when and how often to be screened. The American Cancer Association recommends starting at age 50, but some men need to start in their 40s. You may not need it if you are over 75 - but talk to your doctor.
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This educational activity has been developed by Men's Health Network and Mechanisms in Medicine Inc.

This activity is supported by independent educational grants from Ferring, Janssen Biotech, Pfizer, and Sanofi Genzyme.

This website is part of the Animated Patient™ series developed by Mechanisms in Medicine Inc., to provide highly visual formats of learning for patients to improve their understanding, make informed decisions, and partner with their healthcare professionals for optimal outcomes.