Prostate cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in men, affecting nearly 1 in 7 men. However, with an early diagnosis, prostate cancer is also one of the most treatable types of cancer. If you’re in the Greater Los Angeles area and you’re experiencing unusual symptoms such as trouble urinating or erectile dysfunction, let Dr. Kyle K. Himsl diagnose your symptoms and determine whether prostate cancer is the root of the issue. Call Dr. Himsl at his office in Thousand Oaks, California to book your consultation or request your appointment online.
Prostate cancer has no discernible symptoms in its early stages. As the disease progresses, however, you might begin to notice:
It’s not clear what exactly causes prostate cancer, though certain factors can increase your risk. You might be at greater risk for the disease for the following reasons:
Older men are at a much higher risk for the disease than others. In fact, nearly 80% of men over 80 years of age have cancer cells in their prostate.
African-American men have a greater risk of contracting prostate cancer than men of any other race. African-American men who get prostate cancer are also more likely to have an aggressive form of the disease.
Prostate cancer tends to be more aggressive in obese men than others.
If other men in your family were diagnosed with prostate cancer, particularly your father or a brother, you’re at higher risk of experiencing the disease yourself. Some research also indicates that a family history of breast cancer can increase your risk for prostate cancer.
For initial prostate cancer screening, Dr. Himsl performs a digital rectal exam, using a gloved finger to inspect your prostate. If he feels anything abnormal, such as an irregularity in size, he’ll follow up with an ultrasound and take a sample of your prostate tissue for further testing.
If you’re diagnosed with a particularly mild case of prostate cancer, Dr. Himsl might not recommend immediate treatment, and you may not need treatment at all. In these cases, regular checkups monitor the disease to determine whether treatment is necessary in the future.
For more advanced cases of prostate cancer, Dr. Himsl may take the following treatment approaches:
If your cancer is confined only to your prostate gland, Dr. Himsl may surgically remove the prostate along with some local tissue to wipe out the cancer. Dr. Himsl typically performs this surgery with the assistance of the robotic da Vinci® Surgical System.
Dr. Himsl may recommend radiation therapy, a common cancer treatment, if your cancer has spread beyond your prostate.
During hormone therapy, Dr. Himsl gives you medication that blocks the production of testosterone. Prostate cancer cells take advantage of testosterone to grow, so blocking the production of testosterone can slow or kill these cells.
Chemotherapy is a medication that kills rapidly growing cells, and it’s typically taken in pill or injectable form.
If you’re in the Greater Los Angeles area and have been experiencing symptoms you think might be indicative of prostate cancer, call Dr. Himsl to receive a diagnosis or request your consultation online.