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Prostate Cancer :: Prostate cancer awareness week, US

Every three minutes a man finds out he has prostate cancer — the second-leading cause of cancer death in American men. In fact, more than 218,890 cases are expected in 2007, making prostate cancer among men more prevalent than breast cancer among women.

Yet men don”t get checked. That is why the non-profit Prostate Cancer Education Council (PCEC) coordinates free or low-cost screenings for millions of men across the United States each year during Prostate Cancer Awareness Week.

The Council, which brings together recognized physicians and researchers, was founded on the fact that prostate cancer is nearly 100 percent survivable if caught in its earliest stages.

“If only men would take annual screening for prostate cancer as seriously as women do for breast cancer,” comments Dr. E. David Crawford, Head of the Urologic Oncology Department at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center and Founder/Chairman of the PCEC. “Every three minutes an American male discovers he has prostate cancer. This is a staggering statistic, but palatable when tempered with early diagnosis when the disease is at its most curable stage.”

This year, Prostate Cancer Awareness Week (PCAW) will be held Sept. 17 — 22 and will potentially screen thousands of men. With more than 500 screening sites across the United States, nearly every man at risk can get checked. Men are at risk if they are over age 40, or over age 35 if they are African-American or have a family history of the disease.

Screenings during PCAW take about 10 minutes and include a Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) blood test and a Digital Rectal Exam (DRE) done by a trained professional. Men also can choose to have their cholesterol and testosterone levels checked, as many factors play into overall health awareness and a man”s overall risk for prostate cancer.

With all these factors playing into a man”s understanding of prostate cancer, PCEC has dedicated each day of PCAW to one particular topic relating to the disease.

The days are:

Monday, Sept. 17 — General Prostate Cancer Awareness Day
Tuesday, Sept. 18 — Advanced Prostate Cancer Awareness Day
Wednesday, Sept. 19 — Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) Awareness Day
Thursday, Sept. 20 — Women, Families & Caregivers Day
Friday, Sept. 21 — Know Your Numbers (Cholesterol, Testosterone, Obesity & Nutrition) Day
Saturday, Sept. 22 — New Horizons (Innovation, Research & Upcoming Treatment Options) Day

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