The prostate is an exocrine gland of the male reproductive system, and exists directly under the bladder, in front of the rectum. An exocrine gland is one whose secretions end up outside the body e.g. prostate gland and sweat glands. It is approximately the size of a walnut.
Prostate cancer is a disease which only affects men. Cancer begins to grow in the prostate a gland in the male reproductive system.
During the early stages of prostate cancer there are usually no symptoms. Most men at this stage find out they have prostate cancer after a routine checkup or blood test. When symptoms do exist, they are usually one or more of the following:
The patient urinates more often
The patient gets up at night more often to urinate
He may find it hard to start urinating
He may find it hard to keep urinating once he has started
There may be blood in the urine
Urination might be painful
Ejaculation may be painful (less common)
Achieving or maintaining an erection may be difficult (less common).
If the prostate cancer is advanced the following symptoms are also possible
Bone pain, often in the spine (vertebrae), pelvis, or ribs
The proximal part of the femur can be painful
Leg weakness (if cancer has spread to the spine and compressed the spinal cord)
Urinary Incontinence (if cancer has spread to the spine and compressed the spinal cord)
Fecal incontinence (if cancer has spread to the spine and compressed the spinal cord)
If you are currently experiencing one or more of these signs and symptoms, it is really important to talk to your primary doctor and to test the status of your prostate. Remember that finding Cancer in an early stage can save your life