Fast Facts from the WHA Information Center: Prostate Cancer
Prostate cancer is the second most diagnosed form of cancer in American men, following skin cancer. The American Cancer Society projects there will be roughly 250,000 new cases and 34,000 deaths from prostate cancer in 2021. About 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer. Older men and non-Hispanic African American men are at a greater risk of being diagnosed with prostate cancer. Risk factors other than race and age include family history (genetic) and lifestyle.
Analysis by the WHA Information Center shows roughly 10,500 records for prostate cancer for inpatient and emergency department visits in Wisconsin for years 2018-2020. The ZIP code which had the highest count of visits for prostate cancer was in Winnebago County. The Fox Valley region registered a higher number of cases by ZIP code than other areas of the state.
The average age of men diagnosed with prostate cancer nationally is 66, the same average seen in Wisconsin. The age group with the highest number of patient visits related to prostate cancer is 66-70, followed closely by ages 61-65.
Most prostate cancers are found early through screening. Early prostate cancer usually causes no symptoms. The American Cancer Society lists the following signs and symptoms to look out for:
- Problems urinating, including a slow or weak urinary stream or the need to urinate more often, especially at night;
- Blood in the urine or semen;
- Trouble getting an erection (erectile dysfunction, or ED);
- Pain in the hips, back (spine), chest (ribs) or other areas from cancer that has spread to bones; and
- Weakness or numbness in the legs or feet, or even loss of bladder or bowel control from cancer pressing on the spinal cord.
This story originally appeared in the September 23, 2021 edition of WHA Newsletter