Cancer Support Group

Monday, Nov 20th

Last update:06:42:40 AM GMT

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Prostate Cancer Risk Factors

  • Prostate cancer seems to run in some families, which suggests that in some cases there may be an inherited or genetic factor. Having a father or brother with prostate cancer doubles a man’s risk of developing this disease.
  • Some inherited genes raise the risk for more than one type of cancer. Mutations in these genes may also increase prostate cancer risk in some men, but they account for a very small percentage of prostate cancer cases.
  • Age is the strongest risk factor for prostate cancer. Prostate cancer is very rare before the age of 40, but the chance of having prostate cancer rises rapidly after age 50.
  • Sexually transmitted infections (like gonorrhea or chlamydia) might increase the risk of prostate cancer.
  • Men who eat a lot of red meat or high–fat dairy products appear to have a slightly higher chance of getting prostate cancer. Fat increases production of the hormone testosterone, which may promote the development of prostate cancer cells.
  • Obesity not only contributes to diabetes and high cholesterol, but has also been associated with some common cancers, including hormone–dependent tumors such as prostate, breast, and ovarian cancer.
  • Testosterone naturally stimulates the growth of the prostate gland, men who use testosterone therapy are more likely to develop prostate cancer than are men who have lower levels of testosterone. Long–term testosterone treatment also may cause prostate gland enlargement.

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