Movember, raise awareness for men’s health issues


#1

November is not just turkey month—it’s also the month of Movember, when men all over the world grow mustaches and take the Move Challenge to raise awareness for men’s health issues. This makes November the perfect time to educate yourself, schedule a pre–holiday season checkup with your doctor, and maybe start some healthy new habits.

A recent Cleveland Clinic survey found that 61 percent of men avoid visiting their doctor even when they need to go. Many guys are too embarrassed to ask their doctors about subjects like erectile dysfunction and prostate cancer, but failing to address these issues only makes them worse in the long run.

  1. Should You Have a PSA (Prostate Cancer Screening Blood Test)?
    Should you still schedule that PSA even though the US Preventative Services Task Force no longer recommends that healthy men receive routine prostate-specific antigen (PSA) testing? Don’t just take the government’s advice—make an informed decision about whether prostate cancer screening is right for you.

  2. A Third Option for Prostate Cancer Treatment: Active Surveillance
    If you’ve been diagnosed with early-stage prostate cancer and are considering aggressive surgery or radiation therapy, you may want to ask about another option—active surveillance, also known as watchful waiting. A survey of US physicians active in prostate cancer treatment showed that over 85 percent considered active surveillance to be an effective strategy, discuss the choices with a urologist for those seeking an alternative to aggressive treatment.

  3. Can Prostate Cancer Be Prevented?
    Prostate cancer is one of the most serious health problems in the global community. About one in every nine men in the United States will develop the disease during his lifetime. Because of this high incidence, many men are asking how they can prevent prostate cancer. The truth is, you cannot actually prevent prostate cancer.

  4. Testosterone Replacement Therapy—Overused and Mostly Abused
    Only 3 percent of the US male population needs testosterone replacement therapy (TRT), but many older men think TRT drugs will magically boost their mood, energy, and sex drive. Before you buy into the marketing, consider that these drugs come with risks of lower sperm count, thickening of the blood, and acceleration of prostate cancer.


#2

My husband, Kate’s dad (the T1 in our family!) was diagnosed with prostate cancer in March this year. He had a prostatectomy in July and is recovering well. Please get checked guys - for the sake of your family if not just for your own health. (I wrote about this in my blog if you want to hear more of our particular journey - Time4t1.blogspot.com. The post is called “But it is only September…”). And please support Movember!


#3

I total disagree with the so called Task Force about the PSA test. The test is a simple blood test and is a good idea after men reach a certain age, Helped me catch my prostate cancer Early.


#4

I had the surgery about ten years ago and I’m cancer-free. But the decision on the PSA test is a complex one and I can understand the sentiment that routine PSA tests are not warranted.

If the PSA were a go/ no go test, we wouldn’t be having this discussion. But it’s not. That test is just a first step down a long road to more tests and decisions. And each of those steps involve risks. In addition to the prostate biopsy(s) and surgery or radiation, there is the mental effort and anxiety of understanding your situation and trying to make the best decision. My recollection is that you have to test and analyze many patients before you actually alter a single outcome (e.g. metastasis/ premature death)

While the test and my decisions turned out to be correct, I spent multiple months in research and testing to decide what course of treatment to follow. Just understand that the PSA test is the easy part!