Dr Nighat discusses symptoms of prostate cancer
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Your wee can give a lot of clues about your overall health. If you are weeing much more frequently, including getting up in the middle of the night to dash to the bathroom, this could be a cause for concern.
Do you find yourself waking up in the night desperate for a wee?
It isn’t just nature calling: it could be a wake-up call about your prostate health.
That midnight dash to the loo could be a symptom of prostate cancer.
Around 50,000 men in the UK are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year.
One of the difficulties in diagnosing prostate cancer is that it often doesn’t present with many symptoms until the disease has progressed.
Waking up in the night to wee often has a name: nocturia.
Nocturia could be a sign of a growing tumour putting pressure on the urethra, the tube that carries urine from the bladder.
If you notice you’ve been needing to wee more often, erection hardness including in the middle of the night, you should go to the doctor to get it checked out.
Most often, the cause is not as serious as cancer, but something more common like an enlarged prostate.
However, the only way to rule out prostate cancer is by visiting your GP and getting examined.
According to Prostate Cancer UK, you are considered more at risk of prostate cancer if:
- You are aged over 50
- Your father or brother has had prostate cancer
- You are black
Because prostate cancer tends to have no noticeable symptoms until it has progressed, you must get seen straight away if you think you have symptoms.
Getting checked up and getting the earliest possible diagnosis of prostate cancer could save your life.
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If you talk to your GP and they agree you should have a prostate test, there are a variety of different tests.
Your GP is likely to test your urine to rule out other causes, do a digital rectal examination – which is where the doctor feels your prostate to check for enlargement – and possibly a blood test.
What are the symptoms of prostate cancer?
In addition to weeing more frequently, especially during the night, these are the most common symptoms of prostate cancer in your wee, according to Prostate Cancer UK:
- Difficulty starting to urinate or emptying your bladder
- A weak flow
- Feeling your bladder hasn’t emptied properly
- Dribbling urine after you finish urinating
- A sudden need to urinate – you may sometimes leak urine before you get to the toilet
You may also experience other symptoms, including:
- Back pain, hip pain or pelvis pain
- Problems getting or keeping an erection
- Blood in the urine or semen
- Unexplained weight loss.
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