Prostate cancer has a 99-percent survival rate when detected early

Sept. 8, 2010

September is National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month and the Cancer Centers of Northern Arizona Healthcare at Flagstaff Medical Center is sponsoring a free prostate screening to provide early detection. The screening is from 4:30 – 7 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 28, at the Cancer Center, 1200 N. Beaver St., on FMC’s West Campus. Screenings are by appointment and include a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test and physical examination by a physician. To schedule a prostate cancer screening appointment, call 928 773-2261; walk-ins will be seen as time allows.

It is estimated that one in six men will develop prostate cancer during their lifetime. Fortunately, with early detection and the many new options for the treatment of prostate cancer, the five-year survival rate is at 99-percent according to the National Cancer Institute. Screenings can detect the disease in its early stages, allowing for better treatment options and longer survival rates with early diagnosis. Men between the ages of 50 and 79 years and/or men over the age of 45 who have a family history of prostate cancer are recommended to receive annual prostate exams.

Prostate cancer is the most common type of cancer found in American men and accounts for the second-leading cause of cancer deaths. In Arizona, approximately 4,300 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year, yet the mortality rate associated with prostate cancer has decreased significantly over the past 10 years. Coconino County has the third highest incidence rate of the 15 Arizona counties.

The prostate is gland that is part of the male reproductive system. It is about the size of walnut and located just below the bladder. As men age they have a greater risk of developing an enlarged prostate, a condition called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and prostate cancer. Symptoms of an enlarged prostate include frequent urination, straining to urinate, a weak urine stream and a sensation that the bladder has not completely emptied.

The Cancer Centers of Northern Arizona Healthcare are located in Flagstaff and Sedona and are devoted to the comprehensive treatment and early diagnosis of cancer through advanced technology and individualized care. For more information on services and treatments offered at the Cancer Centers of Northern Arizona Healthcare visit or call 800 854-7744.