Prostate Cancer Awareness Month is about being aware and informed. Prostate Cancer Awareness Month is a story of both great heartbreak and great hope. The heartbreak is that each year more than 29,000 men will die of this disease and that prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death of U.S. men. However, if diagnosed early, the five-year survival rate is almost 100 percent. At ten years post diagnosis, 98 percent of men diagnosed early, remain alive.
Prostate cancer is an extremely complex disease—multiple subtypes of this cancer exist, some aggressive and lethal, others non-aggressive and non-life-threatening. The vast majority of prostate cancer occurs as an indolent, slow-growing form of the disease that poses little threat to men’s lifespans. Because one in six men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime, it is important for men to learn about both non-aggressive, slow-growing forms of prostate cancer and aggressive forms of this disease through conversations with their doctors. In addition, because there has been controversy in recent years over when men should be screened for prostate cancer, there is great need for all men to learn about prostate cancer screening methods, including the drawbacks and benefits to current screening tests.