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Prostate Cancer - A Nurse's Guide To Conventional And Natural Treatment Options

Aug 18, 2007
Cancer that grows in the prostate gland is called prostate cancer. In most men, this is a slow process; most men will never know they have the condition. Detected in its earliest stages, prostate cancer can be effectively treated and cured.

Many men, especially those later in life have made the decision with their doctors to simply watch and wait to see what, if anything, happens. At an advanced age, the risks of surgery for prostate cancer or other more radical treatments may be worse than the disease. Prostate cancer is deadly, but because it is slow-growing can be cured if it is caught early enough.

Some men will experience symptoms that could indicate the presence of prostate cancer. Other symptoms could include unintentional weight loss and lethargy. Because prostate cancer symptoms can mimic other diseases or disorders, men who experience any of these symptoms should undergo a thorough work-up to determine the underlying cause of their symptoms.

If cancer is caught in its earliest stages, most men will not experience any symptoms. The need to urinate frequently, especially at night is another common symptom. Blood in the urine or semen and frequent pain or stiffness in the lower back, hips, or upper thighs can also be symptoms of cancer.

A prostate gland biopsy usually confirms a diagnosis. The decision about whether to pursue a PSA test should be based on a discussion between you and your doctor. They are not considered reliable. A bone scan can indicate whether the cancer has metastasized or not but you are exposed to radiation when you do so.

A series of tests may be done to confirm a diagnosis of prostate cancer. When a digital rectal exam is performed by the doctor it often reveals an enlarged prostate with a hard, irregular surface. A chest x-ray may be done to see if there is a spread of cancer.

Conventional treatment relies on radiation therapy used primarily to treat prostate cancers classified as stages A, B, or C. Impotence is one potential complication after a prostatectomy or after radiation therapy. Medicines can be used to adjust the levels of testosterone, this is called hormonal manipulation.

The conventional treatment of prostate cancer is often very controversial. Treatment options can vary based on the stage of the existing tumor. Medications can have many serious side effects, including hot flashes and loss of sexual desire.

Side effects of the many different chemotherapy drugs depend on which ones you're taking and how often and how long they're taken. Be aware that many men choose natural treatment options and forgo surgery, radiation or chemotherapy. Whether radiation is as good as removing the prostate gland is still debatable and the decision about which to choose, if any, can be difficult.

Prostate cancer that has metastasized may be treated conventionally with drugs to reduce testosterone levels, surgery to remove the testes, chemotherapy or with nothing at all. Surgery, radiation therapy, and hormonal therapy can interfere with libido on a temporary or a permanent basis. An oncologist, who is a cancer specialist, will usually recommend treating with a single drug or a combination of drugs.

Concentrating on a diet of predominately fruits and living, not cooked, vegetables and no junk food, should give you an observable improvement in your health within 30 days. Eat lots of fruits and veggies every day, not just a token banana or apple. A good dietary, natural treatment approach is to avoid all acidic inflammatory foods; those are foods that are dead through processing, cooking, etc.

Many men have lowered their PSA levels by eating a diet of alkaline, living foods. If possible, try to eliminate all hormone-containing foods like meat and dairy from your diet. Some foods and beverages to avoid that are inflammatory are: caffeine, salt, sugar, meat, dairy products, additives, soft drinks, white flour, white rice, alcoholic beverages, fast food, processed vegetable oils, and all refined, packaged and processed food.

Making a tea with ginger, by adding a thin slice or two of fresh gingerroot to hot water, is helpful to many people I know. Make smoothies with fruit only, using a base of two bananas, adding a cup of frozen or fresh blueberries and mango chunks or substitute any other fruit and add an energy boost with two tablespoons of coconut oil; add one or two leaves of kale or a handful or two of spinach leaves for another highly nutritional boost. Make highly nutritious raw applesauce using a food processor and put in 2-3 cored pesticide-free apples, with the skin on, and process for a minute or so; so much better for you than canned highly processed applesauce and add 1/4 tsp. cinnamon or two tablespoons of freshly ground flaxseed for another boost if you like.

While the number of men diagnosed with prostate cancer remains very high, survival rates are also greatly improving; perhaps because of improvement in diets. In the end, only you with the help of your doctors, knowing your individual situation, can determine which is the best treatment program for you. It is important to become as informed as possible and read all the newest books, ebooks and research out there available for all treatment options.
About the Author
For more information on prostate cancer treatments and prostate cancer symptoms go to http://www.BestProstateHealthTips.com Helen Hecker R.N.'s website specializing in prostate and prostate cancer tips, advice and resources, including information on prostate tests and natural prostate cancer treatments
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