The American Cancer Society states that approximately one in nine men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime. The disease is particularly uncomfortable due to the many urinary symptoms and problems that arise as the prostate cells start to grow out of control. This makes sense considering where the prostate gland is located: it is below the bladder, in front of the rectum, and around the urethra.
Any abnormal change in size is bound to cause both the reproductive and urinary systems to suffer. Urinary incontinence increases with age from 14% in individuals aged 65 to 69 years but can become constant for those with prostate cancer: if the cancer presses on the spinal cord, complete loss of bladder and bowel control can occur, forcing patients to seek out urinary incontinence supplies, like protective pads or briefs. Since the opposite can also occur -- where the prostate forces the urethra to close and stops urine from being passed - urinary catheters and catheter supplies may also be required.
Fortunately, new data has been analyzed that reveals prostate cancer incidence and mortality rates are decreasing or stabilizing in most countries across the globe. By taking the most recent cancer incidence data from the International Agency for Research on Cancer and combining it with mortality data from the World Health Organization, MaryBeth Freeman, MPH, and Ahmedin Jemal, DVM, PhD, from the American Cancer Society in Atlanta were able to update prostate cancer incidence and mortality patterns across five continents.
"Previous studies have indicated significant variation in prostate cancer rates, due to factors including detection practices, availability of treatment, and genetic factors," Freeman said. "By comparing rates from different countries, we can assess differences in detection practices and improvements in treatment."
Only four of the 44 countries examined show an increase in prostate cancer rates. Seven countries had decreased rates, with the United States showing the largest decrease. The remaining 33 countries had completely stabilized.
Since cancer wreaks havoc on the body in a number of ways, this is great news for Americans; the discomfort of urinary catheters and the worry over treatments will be experienced by fewer people in our great nation, and allow our citizens to live happier, healthier lives.