My experience with prostate cancer:
My PSA started to rise at age 50, up a point or so from the last 5 years, I get a full physical every year, blood work etc..
So I was referred to an Urologist. Had an ultrasound, and needle biopsy. all negative.
Each year for the following 6 years my PSA had again gone up, and was now around 8 or 8.5.. pretty high.
And again, a needle biopsy. Still negative..
All along I had ZERO urology issues. I slept through the night, I could fly from NYC to SFO, a 6 hour flight and not need to use the restroom. My prostate was not enlarged, no lumps, NOTHING..
But I had a sky-high PSA.
The next year the PSA was just under 10. it was 9,8 or so. The urologist said he wanted to do a 'saturation biopsy'. Which instead of 8 needle pokes, they would take 20-24 needle samples.. The urologist said 'for my comfort' I would be put under a mild anesthesia.
I looked at him and said: I think that the anesthesia is more for your protection, than my comfort'.. He asked what I meant:
My reply was that as painful and private the needle pokes are, that about the time he would attempt to take the 10th or 12th needle sample, the patient would be up off the table swinging!! ready to punch the doc in the nose !!
He laughed, and admitted he hadn't thought of it that way..
So with 22 samples, that I never felt,
they STILL found nothing, .
The next year, PSA 11.5.. And another Saturation Biopsy. and again nothing,
But the Urologist was getting concerned, even though I had ZERO symptoms, a PSA that high is indicating something.
I went on a long regime of antibiotics, to rule out a low grade infection.. then another PSA blood test, and the PSA was up over 12. !!
So six months after the last biopsy, another one. and the results were that a few, very isolated 'different' cells were noted. NOT cancer cells, just slightly different prostate cells.
And six months later, PSA still around 12. By this time I would go to a local clinic and get a blood test every month, the results sent to the Urologist. We'd talk, and reafirm the plan to keep monitoring.
So in the fall of that year I had another Saturation Biopsy, and it came back positive. 3/6ths of the segments had cancer, two were around 75%, one about 50%.
My Gleason score was 6, and the other lab said 6.5. there are 'OK' 6 scores, and there are 'not-so-OK' scores of 6.. I can't remember the scoring protocol, but it was just on the more agressive side of 'OK'.
So I shopped around to get more opinions. First I checked out the surgical record of my Urologist of 8+ years, and found out that I should RUN, not walk away from that doc.. And then, from both my FAA medical examiner, and two other medical professionals, one name came up.. So I went to see him.
He was very enlightening. told me many things that I hadn't found out from other sources, and from him, decided that radiation treatments made sense.
So after the radiation treatments, and some other unrelated health issues, I'm assured that the prostate cancer is gone. but prostate cancer can reoccur in different parts of the body, but its slow growing, and like Yanche said, most men get prostate cancer, but usually die from something else.
So, as Yanche recommended, track your PSA, get some education, but don't sweat it..
Colon cancer is MUCH more of an issue for all of us, and grows and spreads FAST.
Stay healthy !!