- What Causes Prostate Cancer and What Are the Risk Factors?
- Leading Cause of Prostate Cancer
- Factors that Don’t Seem to Have a Direct Effect on the Risk of the Disease
What Causes Prostate Cancer and What Are the Risk Factors?
A risk factor involves anything that somehow contributes to your chance to get any disease. In this article, we are pointing out cancer risk factors. You should understand that there are various cancers and, therefore, many different risk factors. There exist risk factors that you can keep under control and risk factors you’re unable to bear any responsibility for. Smoking is a bad addiction that you can give up so that to lower the risk of having cancer down. As for your age and any cases of cancer in your family, there is nothing you can do about them.
Still, even if you’re said to have a risk factor or several ones, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll have to deal with cancer in future. There are people that despite having risk factors are never, actually, diagnosed with it. On the contrary, there are cases when a person faces cancer irrespective of the fact of having few or unknown risk factors.
According to several studies, several factors have been figured out to have an impact on a person’s risk of having prostate cancer.
Leading Cause of Prostate Cancer
The fact is that men under forty are not prone to having the disease. However, keep in mind that the risk increases considerably once you’re over 50. It’s also quite often when men older 65 years get the disease.
The crux of the matter is that the disease is twice more detrimental in case of Afro-Americans than Europeans. Actually, these are exactly men of Afro-American and Caribbean origin that are more likely to fall victim to the disease than any other men. Apart from it, men of Asian-American and Hispanic-Latino ancestry are also less likely to get ill with the disease if compared to non-Hispanic whites. The main point is that there are no exact reasons for the differences mentioned defined.
The most common places where cancer often take place include North America, northwestern Europe, Australia and Caribbean islands. In comparison with them, the following places have less cases detected. The list of such like places involves Asia, Africa, Central America and South America.
The truth is that scientists haven’t yet found any explanation for these geographical differences. If it’s about developed countries, then a more intensive screening can somehow serve as one of the reasons for the difference. At the same time, we shouldn’t underestimate the importance of such factor as a person’s lifestyle that varies greatly from case to case. There is no doubt about Afro-Americans having a lower risk of facing the disease than, for instance, white Americans. Still, their risk increases greatly in comparison with men of the same background and living in Asia.
There is an opinion that genetic factor also has a right to exist since, sometimes, this is as if prostate cancer is passed on from the father or brother to the person. Note, however, that in the majority of cases, prostate cancer occurs when there was absolutely no cases in the family of a patient.
Your risk of getting the disease is twice as higher if your brother or father was diagnosed with it. Still, men who have a brother and not, actually, father with prostrate cancer are more likely to develop it. Also, the fact that there are several relatives in your family suffering from the disease adds greatly too your own risk. This is especially true in case your relatives were quite young when the diagnosis was made.
There are several genes mutations passed on to a person from his relatives that are considered to be a reason for the risk to go higher. However, in overall such like cases are not common.
Below you’ll find a list of the most frequently spread gene mutations:
- Inherited gene changes that affect the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes are known to add to the risk of having either breast or ovarian cancer in women. However, changes in the same genes (BRCA2 is often influenced) lead to the increased prostate cancer risk when it comes to men.
- Men suffering from Lynch syndrome that is often referred to as hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer. This syndrome occurs as well due to passed on gene mutations. Consequently, men may face various other cancers because of it and prostate cancer in particular.
There also exist other gene mutations that significantly contribute to the risk of having prostate cancer.
Factors that Don’t Seem to Have a Direct Effect on the Risk of the Disease
Being on a Diet
It hasn’t actually been figured out if being on a diet plays a big role in prostate cancer. Still, several studies on this field have been carried out.
It has been stated that men who are fond of eating red meat or dairy products that have a big amount of fat are a bit more likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer. Even though doctors can’t provide you with a 100% proof on what is the reason here, the fact that such like men usually don’t tend to eat lots of fruits and vegetables is also important.
According to some studies, men who eat foods with lots of calcium may also be inclined to having prostate cancer. Dairy products, since the amount of calcium in them is quite high, also refer to the group. Pay attention to the fact that, despite the fact that this opinion exists, there was no connection between calcium and particular risk of prostate cancer figured out. Besides, it’s widely known that calcium is quite advantageous to your health.
Suffering from Obesity
Having extra weight is not considered to be of major importance when speaking about the risks of the disease.
There are studies claiming that obese men are not likely to have a less dangerous for of the disease meanwhile being at danger of having a more aggressive prostate cancer. No exact explanations for that have been figured out.
There are studies stating that men with excess weight are prone to facing a more advanced prostate cancer. Moreover, this cancer is quite likely to kill them. However, a proof for it wasn’t found in each and every study carried out in the field.
Smoking and Tobacco Use
Lots of studies have confirmed that smoking has nothing to do with prostate cancer. There are several researches according to which smoking has a little impact on the risk of dealing with prostate cancer in future. Still, this should be investigated further.
The fact that firefighters have a slightly bigger risk of the disease since they are often exposed to various chemicals have been proved on the basis of some studies’ results.
There are studies saying that there may be a connection between being exposed to Agent Orange (this chemical was often used during the Vietnam War) and a higher risk of having prostate cancer. Still, keep in our mind that such a connection wasn’t found in every study. According to the Institute of Medicine, there is only limited evidence of the connection.
Inflammation of the Prostate
There is an opinion implying that prostatitis results in a very high risk of facing prostate cancer. The crux of the matter is that there is no 100% proof of it. The reason for the suggestion is that on examining a sample of prostate tissue, doctors often detect inflammation process in it apart from cancer. This area is currently being studied and it’s too early to confirm anything.
Infections that are Passed on to a Person During a Sexual Intercourse
Scientists are still to find any connection between infections that can be passed on a person during a sexual intercourse (gonorrhea, chlamydia, etc.) and the risk of prostate cancer. The key point here is that these infections may result in the inflammation of the prostate as well. Yet, there haven’t been any 100% true conclusions made.
There are researches claiming that once a person has undergone a vasectomy procedure (a surgical operation carried out with the aim of making men infertile), he is more inclined to having prostate cancer from now on. However, there are studies saying there is no impact a vasectomy procedure has on the risk of getting the disease. Probably, this area will be studied more carefully in future.