Prostate Cancer Symptoms

Common symptoms of prostate cancer include urinary problems, painful ejaculation, and blood in the urine or semen. A man may have the disease for many years before symptoms develop. By the time symptoms do occur, the disease may have spread beyond the prostate. In the absence of prostate cancer symptoms, there are tests that can detect the disease, such as a PSA test.

An Overview of Prostate Cancer Symptoms

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

Common Symptoms of Prostate Cancer

For men who have prostate cancer symptoms, common symptoms include:
  • Urinary problems
  • Not being able to urinate
  • Having a hard time starting or stopping the urine flow
  • Needing to urinate often, especially at night
  • Weak flow of urine
  • Urine flow that starts and stops
  • Pain or burning during urination
  • Difficulty having an erection
  • Painful ejaculation
  • Blood in the urine or semen.

Other Prostate Cancer Symptoms

Prostate cancer can spread to the lymph nodes of the pelvis. Or it may spread throughout the body. It tends to spread to the bones. So bone pain -- especially in the back, hips, or upper thighs -- can be another symptom of prostate cancer.

Are They Symptoms of Prostate Cancer or Something Else?

Most often, these possible symptoms of prostate cancer are not actually the result of prostate cancer. For example, as men get older, their prostate may grow bigger and block the flow of urine or interfere with sexual function. This common condition, called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), is not prostate cancer, but it can cause many of the same prostate cancer symptoms. An infection or inflammation of the prostate (called prostatitis) may also cause many of the same symptoms.
Any man with these symptoms should tell his doctor so that problems can be diagnosed and treated as early as possible. He may see his regular doctor or a urologist, a doctor whose specialty is diseases of the urinary system.
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