Prostate cancer symptoms: Five telltale signs when peeing that could signal cancer
Prostate cancer is a form of cancer that begins in the gland cells of the prostate, found only in men. It usually develops slowly, so there may be no signs for many years. In fact, symptoms of prostate cancer do not usually appear until the prostate is large enough to affect the tube that carries urine from the bladder out of the penis (urethra), according to the NHS.
This means that – unless the cancer has spread – the symptoms are associated with urinating.
According to Cancer Research UK, symptoms include:
- Passing urine more often
- Getting up during the night to empty your bladder (nocturia)
- Difficulty passing urine – this includes a weaker flow, not emptying your Bladder completely and straining when starting to empty your bladder
- Blood or semen in your urine
As the charity explains, it is very unusual to have symptoms to do with passing urine.
“These are much more likely to be caused by your prostate gland becoming enlarged as you get older,” it says.
An enlarged prostate usually caused by a condition called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH).
BPH is when the prostate gland grows and presses on the urethra.
According to the NHS, many men worry that having an enlarged prostate means they have an increased risk of developing prostate cancer – this is not the case.
“The risk of prostate cancer is no greater for men with an enlarged prostate than it is for men without an enlarged prostate,” says the health body.
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Nonetheless, survival for prostate cancer is strongly related to the stage of the disease at diagnosis so it is imperative to act on the warning signs if and when they appear.
“If you have symptoms that could be caused by prostate cancer, you should visit a GP,” advises the NHS.
As the health body explains, there’s no single, definitive test for prostate cancer.
The GP will discuss the pros and cons of the various tests with you to try to avoid unnecessary anxiety.
Am I at risk?
It’s not known exactly what causes prostate cancer, although a number of things can increase your risk of developing the condition.
The most obvious risk factor is age – prostate cancer is most common in men aged 75 to 79 years, according to Cancer Research UK.
Your ethnicity may also determine your risk of developing prostate cancer.
As Cancer Research UK reports, prostate cancer is more common in black-African men than white men. It is least common in Asian men.
Lifestyle factors may also determine your risk of developing prostate cancer.
Being overweight or obese increases your risk of advanced prostate cancer.
Researchers have found a link between being obese or overweight and cancers being higher grade (faster growing).
Emphasising the point, there is some evidence that being active might help to lower your risk of developing prostate cancer.
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