Prostate Cancer (Prostate Carcinoma)

Prostate cancer or prostate carcinoma is a tumor disease of the male prostate gland. It is one of the most common types of cancer in men and can usually be treated well if detected early.

Prostate Cancer (Prostate Carcinoma)

What is prostate cancer?

The prostate, also known as the prostate gland, is one of the male reproductive organs. About the size of a walnut and shaped like a chestnut, it is located below the bladder in front of the rectum. See gradphysics for Hypervitaminosis in English.

Composed largely of connective tissue and muscle, the prostate produces some of the fluid that is expelled during ejaculation. Prostate carcinomas usually develop in the outer area of ​​the gland and are the most common type of cancer in men.

Prostate cancer usually occurs in older men over the age of seventy, but it can also be diagnosed in younger men. However, enlarged prostates are not always prostate cancer – benign tumors and harmless inflammations of the prostate are also common.


Prostate cancer develops due to a combination of different risk factors. A significant factor that can lead to this condition is heredity. If a family member has already had prostate cancer, the likelihood of developing prostate cancer yourself is about twice as high.

Another risk factor for prostate cancer is age. Prostate cancer is less common in men under the age of 50 than in men over that age. Diet and general lifestyle can also trigger the onset of prostate cancer.

Men who eat a high-fat, low-fiber diet are more at risk than those who eat lots of vegetables and fruit. This suggests that a high body mass index is a particular risk factor for prostate cancer.

Symptoms, Ailments & Signs

In most cases, there are no noticeable symptoms at first. The first signs are usually only noticed when the tumor in the prostate (prostate gland) has reached a certain size. However, these are often uncharacteristic.

In advanced disease, there are most often problems with urination (micturition disorders), since the urethra is narrowed by the tumor and the urine outlet is thus blocked. These usually include delayed onset of urination, urinary retention (inability to urinate) or increased dripping. Residual urine often remains in the bladder after voiding.

This is accompanied by a general increased urge to urinate, which occurs primarily at night. There are occasional abnormalities in the urinary stream. This can be very weak or frequently interrupted. It can also lead to erectile dysfunction, painful ejaculations and low ejaculation. Pain in the genital area sometimes occurs with nerve damage.

Some sufferers have difficulty emptying their bowels. Visible blood may be present in urine or semen. In addition, a number of general symptoms of cancer can occur. These include fever, night sweats, poor performance, general exhaustion and tiredness, weight loss or anemia. If metastases have already formed in the bones, severe pain occurs in the lower back, pelvis or hips.

Diagnosis & History

In many cases, prostate cancer is detected in the course of a preventive check-up, since there is no pain and hardly any symptoms in the early stages of the disease. Symptoms that can nevertheless indicate prostate cancer include problems with urination, problems with bowel movements, unexplained weight loss, blood in the urine, and bone pain.

However, those affected usually only become aware of symptoms of this type when the prostate cancer has already formed metastases. The most common examination of the prostate is the digital rectal examination – in this case the doctor feels the prostate through the wall of the rectum and assesses the size, shape and texture of the prostate gland.

The PSA test, which monitors the release of the protein molecule of the prostate-specific antigen, can also provide information about prostate carcinoma. Other diagnostic methods are tissue sampling, ultrasound examinations and computed tomography.


Prostate cancer that is detected too late can significantly impair bladder function as it progresses. Possible complications are overactivity of the bladder with a constant urge to urinate, occasional involuntary loss of urine or complete incontinence. If the tumor damages the nerves in the vicinity of the prostate, erectile dysfunction occurs.

In advanced stages, prostate cancer often forms secondary growths (metastases) in the lymph nodes and bones, especially in the pelvis, thighs, ribs and back. Bone metastases are very painful and often result in fractures. Metastatic prostate carcinoma is usually treated with radiation or chemotherapy. Possible side effects include inflammation of the bladder and rectum, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, hair loss and an increased susceptibility to infections.

Hormone therapy is often accompanied by a reduction in bone density, hot flashes and erectile dysfunction. In the long term, the risk of metabolic disorders and cardiovascular diseases increases. Complete surgical removal of the prostate can complicate temporary or long-term urinary incontinence and narrowing of the bladder outlet, making urination difficult.

Damage to certain nerve cords during surgery causes loss of erectile function. If prostate cancer is left untreated or treated too late, metastases can spread throughout the body and eventually cause the patient’s death.

When should you go to the doctor?

Men who experience irregularities or changes in their libido should get checked out. If there are any abnormalities when going to the toilet, peculiarities when urinating or a general feeling of discomfort, a doctor is needed. Swelling, a feeling of tightness in the abdomen or pain indicate a health impairment. A doctor’s visit is necessary as soon as the symptoms persist or increase.

Erectile dysfunction, pain during ejaculation or loss of urinary control must be examined and treated. If pain spreads through the genital area into the back, there is an acute need for action. In these cases, the disease is already at an advanced stage. Since prostate cancer leads to premature death if left untreated, a check-up visit to a doctor is indicated as soon as the first abnormalities appear. In addition, men should generally take part in regular cancer check-ups so that early detection of the disease is made possible.

A decrease in body weight, exhaustion, fatigue or rapid fatigue are signs of an existing disease. If you develop unusual night sweats, reduced physical performance or bleeding, you need a doctor. A pale complexion, inner weakness or listlessness are further indications of a health disorder. If you have problems with bowel movements, you should consult a doctor as soon as possible.

Treatment & Therapy

Prostate cancer can be treated in a variety of ways, with the treatment chosen depending on the stage of the disease, the patient’s age and general health, and the rate at which the tumor is growing. Treatment can consist of one or more therapeutic approaches.

Radiation therapy is one of the treatment methods for prostate cancer, although there are two different types of this therapy. On the one hand, the patient can be irradiated from the outside and, on the other hand, irradiation through radiation source implants can be used, in which small radiation sources are implanted in the affected person, which act directly on the tissue of the prostate.

Other methods used in the treatment of prostate cancer include hormone therapy, which removes testosterone from the body, surgery, which can completely remove the cancer in its early stages, immunotherapy, and chemotherapy. The success of the treatment is all the more likely if the prostate cancer was discovered early.


Prostate cancer is a disease that can only be prevented to a limited extent. However, it is important to lead a healthy life with plenty of exercise and a healthy diet. You should also pay attention to a normal body weight and take countermeasures if the body mass index is higher than 30. In addition, men should have preventive medical check-ups from the age of 50 at the latest. Men who have a family history of prostate cancer should start screening even earlier to get prostate cancer diagnosed at an early stage.


Once the treatment for prostate cancer has ended, it is usually not possible for the patient to go about his normal everyday life. Physical and mental impairments often put a lot of strain on the patient. Therefore, after the treatment of the patient’s prostate cancer is completed, follow-up care is provided.

It begins about a quarter of a year after the end of treatment. The patient should be examined regularly by the treating specialist in urology. This is the only way to detect the recurrence of the cancer in good time in order to intervene early with suitable treatment. During the follow-up examinations, the determination of the PSA value is of great importance.

If this value is harmless, further investigations are not necessary. In addition, it is necessary to recognize and treat the accompanying symptoms and side effects of the treatment as part of the aftercare. Here, for example, there can be a risk of thrombosis or long-term defects in urination.

Furthermore, psychological, physical and social problems are caught and treated through aftercare. The aim of the aftercare treatments is to accompany and support the patient as best as possible on their way back to normal life. The patient may be of working age, for whom optimal earning capacity should be restored.

You can do that yourself

Prostate cancer is a serious condition that needs to be treated by a medical team. Nevertheless, those affected can take some measures to reduce the symptoms of the disease and promote recovery.

Rest and relaxation are the first things to do. During or after the treatment, the body is severely weakened and must not be subjected to stress, sport or strenuous physical work. A suitable diet and compliance with the suggested hygiene measures also support healing and prevent any complications such as chronic exhaustion, bleeding or wound healing disorders.

Patients should also go through the medications they are currently taking with their doctor. Certain preparations have a draining effect or affect the bladder muscles and must therefore be avoided. Anyone who regularly takes diuretics, antidepressants, antiallergics, Parkinson’s drugs or antispasmodics should inform the doctor about it. The doctor can clarify the risks and point out possible alternatives.

In consultation with the doctor, various homeopathic remedies can also be tried. These include pumpkin seeds, nettle root and sawtooth palmetto, as well as various extracts and ointments made from medicinal herbs. If side effects occur after taking these preparations, the family doctor must be informed.