Smart Screening for Early Diagnosis May Help Cure Prostate Cancer

In view of rising prevalence of prostate cancer in the country, experts have recommended targeted or smart screening to diagnose the disease at an early stage which increases the chances of patient survival.

According to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and various state cancer registries, prostate cancer is the second most common form of cancer among Indian males with an incidence rate of nine to 10 per 1,00,000 population, which is higher than Africa and other parts of Asia.

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In Delhi, prostate cancer is the second most frequently diagnosed form of cancer among men and accounts for about 6.78 per cent of all malignancies.

With September observed as Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, experts stressed on the need of putting extra effort to raise awareness about the disease.

"Chances of a patient surviving for more than 10 years are very high if prostate cancer is treated at an early stage," the head of the Department of Urology and Renal Transplant at Safdarjang Hospital, Dr Anup Kumar, said.

"“Also, introduction of robotic surgery has made surgical intervention for management of prostate gland much easier. The numerous advantages of robotic surgery over the open surgery include, minimal blood loss, smaller cuts to the abdominal tissue, better vision of internal organs to a surgeon and lesser days of hospitalisation.” " - Dr. Anup Kumar

There are many new clinical trials which have shown that combinations of a few drugs can help in increasing survival chances.

Dr Kumar said that if diagnosed at an earlier stage, when cancer is confined only to the prostate gland, there is a very good chance of curing it and this can be done either by radiation therapy to kill the cancerous cells or by surgically removing the malignant gland from the body.

According to Dr Sudhir Kumar Rawal, head of department and director at Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Institute and Research Centre, prostate cancer if diagnosed at an early stage – localized, it can very well be treated with radiation therapy or removed surgically.

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"“In both cases, the probability of 10-year survival is very high. Prostate cancer symptoms are like the ones in Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) with an additional sign of blood in urine”" - Dr. Anup Kumar

The Ayushman Bharat Scheme can go a long way in allowing people to receive treatment for cancer as the scheme aims at providing a cover of Rs 5 lakh per family annually, Dr Kumar said, adding this will prevent morbidity and mortality among poor patients.

He also said that advanced 3-D laparoscopy and robotics, along with cancer drugs are available free of cost in tertiary-care government hospital like Safdarjung Hospital and AIIMS.

Experts emphasise on making PSA exam – a blood test used primarily to screen for prostate cancer – a part of routine health check-up.

Aggravation of urological symptoms should not be neglected at any time and all patients with a family history of prostate cancer or with urinary complaints should undergo yearly PSA and digital rectal examination after the age of 50 years and 40 years respectively.

(This story was auto-published from a syndicated feed. Only the title and image have been edited by FIT)

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