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Prostate Cancer Series: What is Prostate Cancer?

Prostate cancer is a disease specific to men and develops in the prostate – a walnut-shaped organ in a man’s lower abdomen that controls the flow of urine and semen through the reproductive system.

According to the Prostate Cancer Foundation, prostate cancer is typically a slow-growing tumor, often causing no symptoms until it reaches a more advanced stage. Once the disease begins to grow more rapidly or spreads outside the prostate, it can become a much larger health issue. This aggressive type of prostate cancer can occur at any age, though more commonly in men over 50.

Prostate cancer is suspected if men have an elevated level of a substance in the bloodstream known as prostate specific antigen or PSA. To diagnose prostate cancer, an outpatient biopsy procedure is performed. If cancer is found, biopsy findings are used to determine the patient’s risk level, such as low-risk, intermediate-risk or high-risk. The risk level assigned to a patient typically guides a doctor’s recommendations on what type of treatment, if any, should be pursued.

If facing a prostate cancer diagnosis, it is important to consider all treatment options and have a conversation with your doctor to determine the best care plan for your individual needs. Learn more about prostate cancer and how CyberKnife® treats the disease by viewing our Prostate Cancer: CyberKnife Treatment Overview below or visit the Prostate Cancer Foundation for an Introduction to Prostate Cancer Guide.

In our next post, we will highlight important prostate cancer data from the American Cancer Society’s 2013 statistics.

This post is part of a series dedicated to addressing one of the most important health issues facing men today. Check our blog for additional information about prostate cancer and the unique benefits of CyberKnife® treatment.