Disease Paper

Submitted By mbeelen
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Pages: 3

The Risk Factors, Causes and Preventative Interventions of Prostate Cancer

Prostate Cancer is a slow progressing cancer occurring in males, which usually starts in the gland cells of the prostate (PCFA 2013). There is no direct cause for prostate cancer, although a number of risk factors have been identified (Kirby and Madhavan 2010). Genetic mutations are a cause for tumours, although it is based on the risk factors that allow for these genetic mutations to occur. (Gann 2002). The causes based on risk factors can be categorized under genetics and environmental factors (Gann 2002). Family history plays a large effect on whether a man will develop prostate cancer, as there is a two-fold increase in the risk of prostate cancer for men with a 1st-degree relative who has been diagnosed (Kurby and Madhavan 2010). An increased risk has also been suggested for men with a family history of breast cancer (Kurby and Madhavan 2010). There are 29 genes that have been linked to prostate cancer susceptibility (Kurby and Madhavan 2010). Age is also a strong predetermining risk factor (Gann 2002). Men over the age of 65 have an incidence risk which increases by over three times (Kurby and Madhavan 2010). Weight, physical inactivity and diet also increase the risk of developing prostate cancer (Pienta and Esper 1993). The amount of dietary fat consumed has a large increase on the development, as well as a diet rich in dairy products and red meat Kurby and Madhavan 2010). There has been research which has suggested that saturated fat, commonly found in processed foods, whole-milk dairy products, and fatty cuts of meat, increases the production of the hormone testosterone that may be linked to the growth of prostate cancer cells (Pienta and Esper 1993). It has been researched that an intake of certain levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids will increase the risk of development of prostate cancer (Chavarro et al. 2007). For example, polyunsaturated fatty acids with blood levels of 18:3n-6 enhanced tumours with clinically aggressive behaviour (Chavarro et al. 2007). Lastly, the risk also increases based on race, where men of African-American descent have an increased risk of 60% over European-American men (Gann 2002). Today, North America has the highest risk of prostate cancer (Prostate Cancer Prevention 2013). Just as other diseases have ways to reduce susceptibility, prostate cancer does as well. It has been researched that men with a diet high in fibre have a lower development of prostate cancer (Pienta and Esper 1993). There have also been studies that have indicated that Vitamin D may protect against prostate cancer (Kurby and Madhavan 2010). It has also been proven that an increased intake of selenium and vitamin E will reduce the susceptibility of developing prostate cancer (Nelson et al. 2005). Just as any cancer is based on genetics as well as environmental factors, prostate cancer is not fully preventable. Although an active, healthy lifestyle and diet will reduce the chances of developing prostate cancer (Gann 2002).