15 Common Myths About Prostate Cancer

Finding out you have prostate cancer can be devastating news and you may feel lost and confused. While extremely serious, prostate cancer, like most other cancers, is curable. Like every other disease out there, there are a number of prevalent myths and misconceptions.

To help cut through some of the internet clutter, here are 15 of the most common misconceptions about prostate cancer (source: UrologyWeb.com website):

1. Prostate cancer always has urinary symptoms:

It’s common to think that if a patient does not experience urinary symptoms, then it’s not prostate cancer. This is a myth since prostate cancer causes many different symptoms. In fact, given how widespread the prostatic specific antigen (PSA) examination is, most men are diagnosed in early stages of the disease, during which there aren’t yet any urinary symptoms.

2. Frequent sex and ejaculation improve the prostate’s health:

There are many risk factors for prostate cancer and many lifestyle alterations that can help improve the health of the prostate. But frequent sex or ejaculation has never been scientifically proven to lower the risk of prostate cancer or improve the prostate’s health, as stated by the Florida Urological Associates.

3. Prostate cancer can be transmitted to sexual partners:

Some patients may be concerned that they can pass cancer through sex–but this is a myth! Cancer occurs when cells in the body grow out of control and crowd out normal cells. No type of cancer can be sexually transmitted.

Learn more about prostate cancer’s most common symptoms.

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Andreia has a degree in New Communication Technologies and experience in social media, design and tech. She is eager to find new ways to communicate and explore her curiosity about science and technology.

2 comments

  1. Chris O'Neill says:

    “total PSA only may not be cost effective, evaluation of individual men with the PSA as well as the %free PSA may be”

    May be but no one knows yet.

    So it’s still the same as PSA screening in general. No-one has ever shown that PSA screening, or even PSA screening of a chosen risk group, leads to an overall saving of lives.

    It’s about time someone showed that PSA screening of any risk group at all leads to an overall saving of lives.

  2. Henry Oat says:

    Regarding your statement:

    “An imaging study including an MRI, CAT scan, or ultrasound is not used to diagnose prostate cancer. They may be requested by the physician to evaluate the presence of suspicious areas to be targeted during a biopsy or to evaluate the extent of the cancer. However, it’s a myth that an MRI can substitute a prostate biopsy.”

    I would take major exception with your statement. Imaging before biopsy should become standard of care, the same as it is for women suspected of having breast cancer. What woman do you know who would submit to having 150 needles stuck in her breast to see if maybe they hit something and then go get a mammogram to see if they see something? Urologists have this entirely backwards. Random TRUS biopsies should be relegated to some dark closet of the past. TRUS biopsies regularly miss 40% of clinically significant cancer. Modern mp MRI scans have both a negative and positive predictive value of over 90% for prostate cancer. When a man is suspected of having prostate cancer the first step should be an mp MRI scan. If an area suspicious for clinically significant cancer is found, then an MRI guided biopsy targeting the suspicious area is warranted.

    Standard TRUS biopsies regularly cause swelling and inflammation in the prostate which often results in a rise in PSA leading to more unnecessary biopsies. Erectile Dysfunction as a result of biopsy is not uncommon. The infection rate of TRUS biopsies is up to 4.5% and often results in hospitalization.

    While a biopsy is the only way to diagnose prostate cancer, it should be a targeted, MRI guided or MRI/US fusion guided biopsy, not a TRUS biopsy.

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