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From Case studies in prostate cancer

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Case studies in prostate cancer

Sam is a 50-year-old African-American businessman whose father was diagnosed with prostate cancer in his 80s. He thinks he is too young to develop prostate cancer, but he's recently noticed that he needs to urinate frequently and feels pain while urinating. Sam worries that he may have prostate cancer and consults his doctor, who diagnoses him with prostatitis, a treatable infection of the prostate gland. He speaks with his doctor about his family history and determines that his risk for prostate cancer is only slightly elevated, since his father was diagnosed at such a late age. Because he has a personal connection to the disease and is looking for a way to help, Sam decides to enroll in a clinical trial that is investigating whether vitamin E and other compounds can help prevent prostate cancer.

Zachary is an active 75-year-old who lives with his wife in a retirement community. He had a heart attack in his fifties, and since then has struggled to lower his high cholesterol and blood pressure. Zachary's wife notices that he gets up frequently during the night to urinate and suggests that he go see a doctor. Zachary agrees to see a urologist and, after a series of tests, is diagnosed with early stage prostate cancer. Since his cancer is localized and slow-growing, his doctor suggests it be treated with "watchful waiting," in which his tumor will be carefully monitored but not aggressively treated. Zachary agrees, relieved that his cancer does not need immediate intervention but mindful that he needs to watch for increasing or new symptoms.

Cancer terms:
Immunity: Ability of the body to attack and destroy invading microorganisms or other substances. This is achieved with the help of various cells, which uses various chemical substances as well as physical contact to destroy the invading organisms or substances. Immunity is not specific to outside substances and some time can occur against ones own cells including cancer cells that are markedly abnormal from other cells of the body. Example: Hepatitis vaccination will increase your immunity to the hepatitis virus. See cancer terms for more cancer related terms. Case studies in prostate cancer

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