North Georgia Urology Center

Services > Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in men in the United States. However, if prostate cancer is detected in its' early stages, it can be effectively treated and cured. It is estimated that 230,000 men are currently being diagnosed each year in with prostate cancer in the United States, and 32,000 die each year of the disease.

Prostate cancer often does not cause symptoms for many years. By the time symptoms occur, the disease may have spread beyond the prostate. When symptoms do occur, they may include:

  • Frequent urination, especially at night.
  • Inability to urinate.
  • Trouble starting or holding back urination.
  • A weak or interrupted flow of urine.
  • Painful or burning urination.
  • Blood in the urine or semen.
  • Painful ejaculation.
  • Frequent pain in the lower back, hips, or upper thighs.

These can be symptoms of cancer, but more often they are symptoms of noncancerous conditions. It is important to check with a doctor.

Three treatment options are generally accepted for men with localized prostate cancer: radical prostatectomy, radiation therapy, and surveillance (also called watchful waiting).

  • Radical prostatectomy is a surgical procedure to remove the entire prostate gland and nearby tissues. Sometimes lymph nodes in the pelvic area (the lower part of the abdomen, located between the hip bones) are also removed. Radical prostatectomy may be performed using a technique called nerve-sparing surgery that may prevent damage to the nerves needed for an erection.
  • Radiation therapy involves the delivery of radiation energy to the prostate. The energy is usually delivered in an outpatient setting using an external beam of radiation. The energy can also be delivered by implanting radioactive seeds in the prostate using a needle.
  • Surveillance, taking a wait-and-see approach, may be recommended for patients with early-stage prostate cancer, particularly those who are older or have other serious medical conditions. These patients have regular examinations. If there is evidence of cancer growth, active treatment may be recommended.

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