Health Check: September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month and doctors remind patients to step-up and get checked.

One out of seven men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his life. 

The American Urologic Society recommends men without risk factors get a screening between 50 and 70 years of age, but screening has been tricky in the past. 

But biopsies used to be trickier. 

"Standard biopsies can have some complications associated with them," said Dr. Shawn Blick, urologist with HonorHealth. They can be associated with urinary track infections, sometimes urosepsis in a small amount of patients."

On top of that, standard biopsies were not very precise. 

"A regular biopsy is done using just a regular ultrasound, and usually running through a random template of 12 biopsy cores that get sent to a pathologist and reveal a result. It's sort of random, but there is a template," Blick said. 

Nowadays, medicine is moving toward MRI fusion biopsies, which are much more accurate. They use an MRI to zero in on hot spots. That allows doctors to point directly at the region of interest, Blick said.

When it comes to treatment, many times there can be embarrassing complications, but Blick points out there are many options that most men have probably never even heard of. 

If a procedure results in erectile dysfunction, and it doesn't respond to pills or injection therapy, doctors can implant a penile implant. 

"It's very safe. It's highly affective, and there are very high patient satisfaction rates," Blick said.

Likewise, if a man develops urinary incontinence, doctors can install either an artificial sphincter or male sling to help. 

"My main message during Prostate Cancer Awareness month, is to let people know that if you do have complications, we have solutions," Blick said.

© 2017 KPNX-TV


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment