Prostate Health

  1. Prostate biopsy packs hidden infection risks

    The SECRET risks of a common prostate procedure

    Guys, your urologist won’t tell you this. He won’t admit it, and he won’t even talk about it unless you ask.

    And if you DO ask about the safety of that “just-in-case” prostate biopsy he wants to perform, he’ll swear up and down that it’s safe and easy.

    When it’s all over, he’ll be able to confirm that your low-risk tumor is indeed in no danger of turning aggressive, and you’ll be on your merry way.

    Sounds good, right?

    Well, don’t rush in for that biopsy yet. It’s not nearly the safe and easy procedure your doctor has claimed.

    And in some cases, it can be far more dangerous than the cancer itself!

    A new report on Medscape highlights the shadowy world of unreported side effects and complications.

    The biopsy procedure itself can cause an infection and one of the most frightening conditions of all -- sepsis, a complication of infection that can be FATAL even if you get immediate help!

    The new report finds that 1 in 20 biopsy patients suffer from dangerous infections, including sepsis. And among just prostate cancer patients, there’s reason to believe that the numbers may be even higher.

    EVERY infection is serious. But in the case of prostate patients, the stakes are especially high: A 2011 study found that men hospitalized due to a prostate biopsy infection are 12 TIMES more likely to die.

    That’s right. The cancer might not hurt you… but the biopsy might KILL you!

    Yet urologists still push biopsies too often. In many ways, the age of “active surveillance” might’ve made it worse: With fewer men seeking aggressive treatments, specialists are trying to pick up the slack with extra biopsies and other procedures.

    Seems that at least some of them are more concerned about making up for lost business than doing what’s best for their patients!

    And that’s just one risk. Even without infection, some men can suffer from other problems, including pain that can linger.

    None of this means never get a biopsy.

    But it does mean to be smart about it: Many low-risk cancers DON’T need a biopsy, just a doctor who can help keep watch over the tumor to ensure that it never turns aggressive.

    If you’re on the fence, sometimes an MRI and/or ultrasound alone can give your doctor the information you both need to make the best decision without the help of a biopsy.

    And if it turns out that you really do need that biopsy, there are steps you can take to minimize pain and cut the risks, including a direct MRI-guided biopsy.

  2. Prostate biopsy can be avoided with MRI

    Good news, guys: You can avoid that biopsy!

    It's not just one of the most uncomfortable tests a guy can get.

    It's also dangerous... and often completely unnecessary.

    Now, the latest research finds that many men may be able to completely avoid the dreaded prostate biopsy.

    No stress. No needle. No risk.

    And most importantly, NO CANCER!

    An MRI test can often do more to sort out who's at risk than a biopsy ever will, and that could mean that many men will never need the needles... and never have to live through the anguish of a false cancer diagnosis.

    If you're at risk... if your doc is about to send you out for a biopsy... this new study could be just the news you've been waiting for.

    The research focuses specifically on men with very high PSA scores who would normally be sent out for biopsies pretty much automatically.

    But in this study, some of the men were sent off for an MRI first, which in many cases ruled out cancer.

    More than 1 in 4 men were completely cleared. They DIDN'T need the biopsy.

    It's not a foolproof system, and clearly some men will need biopsies anyway.

    But cutting down by even this amount would be a major victory, because biopsies themselves aren't harmless procedures.

    In one study, 94 percent of men called them "painful," which is no surprise given that a needle goes in you-know-where and then has to poke a few holes to pull out some samples. (Don't do a Google search for picture of that needle -- you don't even want to know what it looks like.)

    That pain lasts for days, sometimes weeks -- and that's not the worst of it.

    Because of where it's going, inside a part of the body that's not exactly known for being clean, there's a risk of moving bacteria around, sending it into places that it shouldn't go and causing an infection.

    Some men end up hospitalized after their biopsies because of these infections.

    Fewer biopsies, with those remaining concentrated on those who need it most, will cut down on both the pain and infection risk.

    But this new approach also means something else.

    The researchers say that it can also help cut down on detecting -- and treating -- harmless cancers, as it's better at sorting out the rarer high-risk cancers that may really need treatment.

    While some docs have already been using MRIs for prostate cancer and other forms of the disease, it might be some time before the practice becomes standard.

    For now, that means that you may have to take action on your own: If you're at risk for cancer or have a warning sign that a doc wants to check out, ask if an MRI might be a better option for you.

  3. Probiotics ease constipation

    Flush away toilet troubles -- for good! It's the "c" word most patients will never dare to mention. No, it's not cancer. It's not even cold sores. It's constipation! Stubborn bowels might be responsible for more day-to-day misery and pain than just about anything else out there, in large part because so many folks suffer in silence and never seek...
  4. Prostate cancer family risk doesn’t mean surgery

    What every prostate patient needs to know You can only do so much, right? You do what you can to cut your risk of prostate cancer, but sometimes it doesn't matter much. If your father or brother has had the disease, you're at risk, too. Time to panic? Not yet, my friend, because even if you've lost the genetic lottery...
  5. Prostate cancer options worse for anxious men

    Don’t lose your nerve when it comes to your prostate Guys, when it comes to prostate cancer, there's one thing you really need to watch out for. And it's NOT the disease itself! Turns out your own anxiety could hurt you more than the cancer ever will, as new research reveals how too much angst over the disease could lead...
  6. Androgen-deprivation therapy linked to dementia

    Your risk of dementia can double within five years of receiving androgen-deprivation therapy, a hormone treatment for prostate cancer. And the longer you’re on the treatment, the worse your odds are.
  7. Prostate cancer may not need treatment

    Prostate cancer may not always need treatment, as new research confirms that early-stage tumors rarely pose a threat.
  8. Prostate cancer linked to waist size

    Your prostate cancer risk may be directly linked to your belly – and the bigger your gut, the bigger your risk of the most aggressive form of the disease.
  9. Testosterone won’t raise prostate risk

    Testosterone therapy won’t raise your risk of prostate cancer and will actually lower your odds of getting the deadliest form of the disease.
  10. Prostate cancer worsened by saturated fats

    Prostate cancer is usually harmless, but a diet rich in saturated fats can cause it to turn aggressive in a hurry.
  11. Selenium can cut risk of high-grade prostate cancer

    Selenium can protect you from the deadliest form of prostate cancer, slashing the risk of high-grade tumors.
  12. Enlarged prostate surgery can cause more problems

    Enlarged prostate can make going to the bathroom miserable and keep you awake at night – but a new surgery offering relief comes with more risks than they’re letting on.
  13. Prostate cancer patients do better on watchful waiting

    Prostate cancer doesn’t always need treatment. New research shows men with low-risk tumors have a better quality of life when they choose active surveillance.
  14. Radiation for prostate cancer can cause other cancers

    Radiation given to patients with prostate cancer can increase the risk of cancers of the bladder, colon and rectum.
  15. Can aspirin cut the risk of death from prostate cancer?

    A new study claims that aspirin can cut the risk of death from prostate cancer – but I’ve done the math, and the numbers just don’t add up.
  16. How supplements can help fight prostate cancer

    Prostate cancer doesn’t always need treatment, and supplements can help. Here’s how.
  17. Cold meds can worsen prostate problems

    WARNING: Men -- treating your cold could send you to the ER!

    When your nose starts running like it's training for the next marathon -- when you're so congested it feels like someone is squeezing your head -- it's tempting to try just about anything in exchange for a little relief.

    But if you're suffering from benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH), there are two things you should never, ever do: Don't touch that decongestant... and don't even think about taking an antihistamine.

    Those drugs might help dry your nose and take the pressure off your head, but they can also put the squeeze on you below the waistline. Continue reading

  18. Prostate treatment isn't always necessary

    Research reveals most prostate tumors never need treatment

    When you have cancer, you need treatment right? That's been the conventional wisdom in medicine for generations.

    And it's been a complete disaster.

    We've created millions of "cancer survivors" living with the lasting and even permanent damage of mainstream treatments, when in fact many early-stage tumors need no treatment at all.

    Now, new research confirms that's especially true of prostate cancer. Continue reading

  19. Vitamin D can beat prostate cancer

    Natural cure flips your body's cancer-killing switch

    Gentlemen, there's nothing scarier than a doc who calls you into his office, looks you in the eye and says the words you've been fearing:

    "You have prostate cancer."

    What follows next is the stuff of nightmares. You'll get poked and prodded so often you'll start to feel like a human pincushion. You'll get more tests than a college kid at the end of a term, and more advice than a "Dear Abby" reader.

    If you're smart and get a second and third opinion, you'll receive wildly conflicting recommendations. One doc will tell you to get surgery. Another will urge radiation.

    And ALL of them will hand you armfuls of drugs. Continue reading

  20. Vitamin D can beat prostate cancer

    Natural cure flips your body's cancer-killing switch

    Gentlemen, there's nothing scarier than a doc who calls you into his office, looks you in the eye and says the words you've been fearing:

    "You have prostate cancer."

    What follows next is the stuff of nightmares. You'll get poked and prodded so often you'll start to feel like a human pincushion. You'll get more tests than a college kid at the end of a term, and more advice than a "Dear Abby" reader.

    If you're smart and get a second and third opinion, you'll receive wildly conflicting recommendations. One doc will tell you to get surgery. Another will urge radiation. Continue reading

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