National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

MACON, Georgia (KBTV)- Each year more than 3 million men in the U.S. battle prostate cancer.

On average, 1 in 9 men will be diagnosed in their lifetime, and 27,000 die of the disease each year. However, African American men are 76% more likely to develop prostate cancer and more than twice as likely to die from it.

The American Cancer Society says so far in 2021, Georgia has reported 8,550 new incidences of prostate cancer and 1,030 deaths from prostate cancer. That’s about 2,000 more cases in 2021 than in 2020. Doctors note that prostate cancer is sometimes hard to detect and if left untreated, it can lead to a more advanced cancer diagnosis in some patients. It’s important for men, especially those with key high-risk factors to get proper and timely screening so it can be detected early and allow for more treatment options and better chances for recovery. 

“Those at highest risk are men with more than one first-degree relative diagnosed with prostate cancer before the age of 65 (like a father or brother). The most common risk factor is age, but if you’re African-American your risks are the highest. ” says Dr. Joseph Bear, a urologist at Piedmont Physicians Urology of Macon.

According to experts, African-Americans have a higher incidenceof prostate cancer compared to other ethnic groups. They are also more likely to develop prostate cancer at an earlier age, have a more advanced stage when diagnosed, and tend to have a more severe type of prostate cancer than other men.**

Men are encouraged to speak with their primary care provider on the best screening options for you and when, based on family history and other individual risk factors, you should get tested. Many prostate cancers are detected through either physical exam (nodules or a mass in the prostate) or by a blood test (PSA). 

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