Prostate Cancer

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Your best chance for surviving prostate cancer is detecting it early. When prostate cancer is found early, there is nearly a 100 percent chance for cure.

What is Prostate Cancer?

Prostate cancer occurs when cells in the prostate grow and multiply uncontrollably, damaging surrounding tissue and interfering with the normal function of the prostate. The cells can spread to other parts of the body. When the disease spreads, it is still called prostate cancer.

At Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center, prostate cancer is treated with a multidisciplinary approach in which a team of experts including medical, surgical and radiation oncologists work together to develop an individual treatment plan based on each patient's unique needs.

Learn More About Prostate Cancer

Cancer risk factors include exposure to chemicals or other substances, as well as certain behaviors. They also include things people cannot control, like age and family history.

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Blood tests, imaging exams and even surgical procedures are used to check for cancer.

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Most cancers have the same symptoms as other, less serious conditions. Still, it’s important to know the signs.

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Common cancer treatments include chemotherapy, radiation treatment and surgery. Doctors select the treatment for prostate cancer based on your diagnosis and disease stage.

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Not surprisingly, some men can be concerned about their fertility when facing surgery for prostate cancer. Surgery to treat prostate cancer usually requires cutting the tubes between the testicles and urethra that transport the sperm and semen. Furthermore, surgery removes the prostate and seminal vesicles that produce the semen. Radiation significantly decreases the amount of semen that is produced, and semen is necessary to carry the sperm. This makes it impossible to father children without highly sophisticated sperm retrieval and in-vitro fertilization procedures.

If you want to have children in the future, it may be a good idea to bank sperm before cancer treatment. Speak to your doctor if you want more information or have questions.

Can you have sex when you have prostate cancer?

Sex during and after prostate cancer surgery or treatments can be difficult. Impotence, or not being able to maintain an erection to have sex, may be a problem after prostate cancer treatment. This may be temporary or permanent. If you are able to get an erection, you may be able to achieve orgasm. However, no semen will be ejaculated during orgasm. Some people call this dry orgasm.

Talk to your health care provider about erection problems. Treatments include, vacuum erection devices and medications given by injections (shots).