Symptoms Of Metastatic Prostate Cancer – How To Identify Them

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Prostate cancer starts in the prostate (hence the name of the adenocarcinoma) but rarely ends there unless it is treated effectively and decisively. Treating the disease this way in the early stages may even cure it and guarantee the patient anywhere between five and ten years of happy living without the disease. But there are those in whom the treatments appear not to work, and there are those who are not lucky enough to catch the disease before it has spread out of the prostate and to other parts of the body.

Metastatic prostate cancer is prostate carcinoma cells in the bloodstream that are now being incident in other locations around the body, notably the bones. The symptoms of this stage of the disease include mainly bone pain, fractures and overall weakness. The bone pain is often in the bones of the spine, pelvis or ribs; but the spread of the malignant cells may very well reach into other bones such as the femur, especially to the proximal part of the bone.

Symptoms of metastatic prostate cancer may also include leg weakness and urinary and fecal incontinence as a result of melanoma in the spine compressing the spinal cord. Observed in the results of a ribonucleic bone scan, the bones of the patient will light up in hot and cold spots, depicting regions or areas of higher and lower density in the bones. Neither of these two occurrences is a good thing because they simply mean that the bone is all messed up and brittle and would likely soon start to fracture spontaneously.

These symptoms, as opposed to being warning signs as is with other diseases, are actually more of an indication of impending doom because such late stage prostate cancer cannot be cured. There are a lot of treatments that may delay these symptoms, but death is often imminent once the carcinoma makes it out of the prostate gland.

Chemotherapeutic drugs for instance, especially when combined with corticosteroids, can help to slow disease progression and postpone symptoms; bisphosphonates have been shown to delay the fractures from happening; Abiraterone Acetate (still in study) causes dramatic reduction in PSA levels and tumor sizes; and opiod pain relieve drugs deal with the worst of the pain. However, it is only all to extend the life of the patient in any way possible, and relieve the symptoms of metastatic disease that he suffers; invariably he dies.

The American Cancer Society warns that it is better not to wait for the symptoms. With better screening techniques, prostate cancer can be detected early, but only with patient cooperation if they will come in for tests as often as once a year when they are over fifty years old.

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One Response to “Symptoms Of Metastatic Prostate Cancer – How To Identify Them”
  1. Yes. By the time a man begins to experience symptoms of prostate cancer, especially bone pain, it is really too late for a cure. At this point treatment can only slow down and delay the progression of the cancer. But eventually treatment tends to no longer be effective. Early screening is still the best option for men.

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