Wellness Wednesday: Prostate Health Awareness Month

African American boy and group of teens in blue shirtsDid you know that, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men?

Mercy Health System would like to take this opportunity to encourage you to care for yourself, and your loved ones, by reminding you of the importance of preventive care.

As they say, “the best defense is a good offense,” and, thankfully, disease prevention begins with a variety of factors including understanding the risks – the ones we can control and the ones we can’t. According to the American Cancer Society, risk factors for prostate cancer include:

Age

The chance of having prostate cancer rises rapidly after age 50. Nearly two out of three prostate cancers are found in men over the age of 65.

Race/ethnicity

Prostate cancer occurs more often in African-American men than in men of other races. African-American men are also more likely to be diagnosed at an advanced stage and are more than twice as likely to die of prostate cancer as white men. Prostate cancer occurs less often in Asian-American and Hispanic/Latino men than in non-Hispanic whites. The reasons for these racial and ethnic differences are not clear.

Family history

Prostate cancer seems to run in some families, which suggests that there may be an inherited or genetic factor. Having a father or brother has been diagnosed more than doubles a man’s risk of developing this disease.

Diet

Men who eat a lot of red meat or high-fat dairy products appear to have a slightly higher chance of getting prostate cancer. These men also tend to eat fewer fruits and vegetables. Doctors are not sure which of these factors is responsible for raising the risk.

Obesity

Most studies have not found that being obese is linked with a higher risk of getting prostate cancer. Some studies have found that obese men have a lower risk of getting a less dangerous form of the disease, but a higher risk of getting more aggressive one. The reasons for this are not clear.

While knowing the physical risk factors is key in helping prevent any disease, so is maintaining a healthy spirit. For example:

  • Remaining optimistic. Research shows that happiness and a positive attitude are associated with lower rates of disease. Focus on your thoughts — stop negative ones and replace them with positive ones.
  • Controlling stress. Stress relievers like deep breathing and muscle relaxation exercises and keeping a journal, can be helpful in controlling the impact stress has on your body.
  • Doing everything in moderation. Don’t try to do too much at one time – make sure to have time for proper nutrition, sleep, work and play.
  • Creating a network. Maintaining a close circle of family and friends can provide you with support when you need it.

Lastly, getting annual screening tests from your Primary Care Physician (PCP) is vital to sustaining your health and helping prevent diseases. Having a PCP who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health. If you don’t have a PCP, just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions. To find a Mercy physician, visit http://www.mercyhealth.org/find-a-doctor.


More Information

CDC Prostate Cancer Feature

Prostate Cancer Foundation

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Wellness Wednesday: Taking Steps to Prevent Prostate Cancer

iStock_000016342465_LargeDid you know that, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, prostate cancer is the most common non-skin cancer and the second leading cause of cancer death among American men?

In 2013 (the most recent year numbers are available):

  • 176,450 men in the U.S. were diagnosed with prostate cancer.*
  • 27,681 men in the U.S. died from prostate cancer.*

*Incidence counts cover about 99% of the U.S. population; death counts cover about 100% of the U.S. population. Use caution when comparing incidence and death counts.

September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month and we would like to take this opportunity to encourage you to care for yourself and your loved ones, by reminding you of the importance of preventive care.

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Controlling Risk

Disease prevention begins with a variety of factors including understanding the risks—the ones we can control and the ones we can’t. According to the American Cancer Society, risk factors for prostate cancer include:

Age

The chance of having prostate cancer rises rapidly after age 50. Nearly two out of three prostate cancers are found in men over the age of 65.

Race/ethnicity

Prostate cancer occurs more often in African-American men than in men of other races. African-American men are also more likely to be diagnosed at an advanced stage and are more than twice as likely to die of prostate cancer as white men. Prostate cancer occurs less often in Asian-American and Hispanic/Latino men than in non-Hispanic whites. The reasons for these racial and ethnic differences are not clear.

Family history

Prostate cancer seems to run in some families, which suggests that there may be an inherited or genetic factor. Having a father or brother has been diagnosed more than doubles a man’s risk of developing this disease.

Diet

Men who eat a lot of red meat or high-fat dairy products appear to have a slightly higher chance of getting prostate cancer. These men also tend to eat fewer fruits and vegetables. Doctors are not sure which of these factors is responsible for raising the risk.

Obesity

Most studies have not found that being obese is linked with a higher risk of getting prostate cancer. Some studies have found that obese men have a lower risk of getting a less dangerous form of the disease, but a higher risk of getting more aggressive one. The reasons for this are not clear.

BlueStar1Maintain a Healthy Outlook

While knowing the physical risk factors is key in helping prevent any disease, so is maintaining a healthy spirit. For example:

  • Remaining optimistic. Research shows that happiness and a positive attitude are associated with lower rates of disease. Focus on your thoughts—stop negative ones and replace them with positive ones.
  • Controlling stress. Stress relievers like deep breathing and muscle relaxation exercises and keeping a journal, can be helpful in controlling the impact stress has on your body.
  • Doing everything in moderation. Don’t try to do too much at one time—make sure to have time for proper nutrition, sleep, work and play.
  • Creating a network. Maintaining a close circle of family and friends can provide you with support when you need it.

Lastly, getting annual screening tests is vital to sustaining your health and helping prevent diseases. Having a primary care physician (PCP) who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health. If you don’t have a PCP, just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

To find a Mercy Health System physician, visit www.mercyhealth.org/find-a-doctor.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

 

Wellness Wednesday: Living and Coping with Prostate Cancer

WalkingCoupleFinding out that you, a friend or family member has cancer is life changing. Although, it may be helpful for you to know that according to the American Cancer Society (ACS), the outlook for many people diagnosed with cancer is very good. In fact, the ACS states that more than two million men in the US count themselves as prostate cancer survivors.

June is Men’s Health Month and Mercy Health System would like to take this opportunity to provide some helpful tips for those who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer, for survivors and their friends and families.

According to the National Cancer Institute (NCI), men diagnosed with prostate cancer have multiple treatment options that include active surveillance (closely following a patient’s condition), surgery, radiation therapy, hormone therapy and chemotherapy. Your care team may recommend one or a combination of treatments.

The NCI offers the following suggestions if you, or a loved one, are undergoing treatment for prostate cancer:

  • Eat well. You may not feel like eating during or soon after treatment, your doctor, a registered dietitian or another health care provider can offer suggestions.
  • Stay active. Research shows that people with cancer have increased energy and reduced nausea and pain when they stay active. If your activity causes you pain or other problems, tell your doctor or nurse.
  • Ask questions. Look to members of your health care team to answer questions about treatment, working and other activities.
  • Seek support. Meet with a social worker, counselor, support group or member of the clergy if you want to talk about your feelings or concerns.
  • Follow up. Make and keep appointments for follow-up care after treatment. Checkups help ensure that any changes in your health are noted and treated, if needed. If you have any health problems between checkups, contact your doctor.

Speaking of doctor visits, having a Primary Care Physician (PCP) who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health. If you don’t have a PCP, visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

When you’re being treated for a disease or condition and a complication arises, it may not always be easy to decide where to go for care. For anything that could indicate a life-threatening situation (like chest pain, major injuries or sudden and severe pain) it’s best to go to the emergency room. For less severe matters that still require immediate attention, if you can’t get in to see your PCP, you can save time and money by going to an urgent care facility.

To find a Mercy Health physician, go to www.mercyhealth.org/find-a-doctor.

Wellness Wednesday: Taking Steps to Prevent Prostate Cancer

swimmingoldermanDid you know that, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men?

June is Men’s Health Month and Mercy Health System would like to take this opportunity to encourage you to care for yourself, and your loved ones, by reminding you of the importance of preventive care.

As they say, “the best defense is a good offense,” and thankfully, disease prevention begins with a variety of factors including understanding the risks—the ones we can control and the ones we can’t. According to the American Cancer Society, risk factors for prostate cancer include:

  • Age: The chance of having prostate cancer rises rapidly after age 50. Nearly two out of three prostate cancers are found in men over the age of 65.
  • Race/ethnicity: Prostate cancer occurs more often in African-American men than in men of other races. African-American men are also more likely to be diagnosed at an advanced stage and are more than twice as likely to die of prostate cancer as white men. Prostate cancer occurs less often in Asian-American and Hispanic/Latino men than in non-Hispanic whites. The reasons for these racial and ethnic differences are not clear.
  • Family history: Prostate cancer seems to run in some families, which suggests that there may be an inherited or genetic factor. Having a father or brother has been diagnosed more than doubles a man’s risk of developing this disease.
  • Diet: Men who eat a lot of red meat or high-fat dairy products appear to have a slightly higher chance of getting prostate cancer. These men also tend to eat fewer fruits and vegetables. Doctors are not sure which of these factors is responsible for raising the risk.
  • Obesity: Most studies have not found that being obese is linked with a higher risk of getting prostate cancer. Some studies have found that obese men have a lower risk of getting a less dangerous form of the disease, but a higher risk of getting more aggressive one. The reasons for this are not clear.

While knowing the physical risk factors is key in helping prevent any disease, so is maintaining a healthy spirit. For example:

  • Remaining optimistic. Research shows that happiness and a positive attitude are associated with lower rates of disease. Focus on your thoughts—stop negative ones and replace them with positive ones.
  • Controlling stress. Stress relievers like deep breathing and muscle relaxation exercises and keeping a journal, can be helpful in controlling the impact stress has on your body.
  • Doing everything in moderation. Don’t try to do too much at one time—make sure to have time for proper nutrition, sleep, work and play.
  • Creating a network. Maintaining a close circle of family and friends can provide you with support when you need it.

Lastly, getting annual screening tests from your Primary Care Physician (PCP) is vital to sustaining your health and helping prevent diseases. Having a Primary Care Physician (PCP) who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health. If you don’t have a PCP, just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

To find a Mercy Health physician, go to www.mercyhealth.org/find-a-doctor.