What is Prostate Cancer?
Cancer is a condition where cells in the body start to grow out of control. When this happens in the prostate, an organ that is part of the male reproductive system, it is called prostate cancer.
Who is at Risk?
Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in American men. Approximately 1 in 9 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer and 1 in 41 men will die of the disease. As you get older, your risk increases.
Furthermore, some men have a higher risk of getting prostate cancer and dying from it. For example, African American men and men with a family history of prostate cancer have an increased risk.
Men with more than one “first-degree relative” (e.g. a father, son, or brother) who have had prostate cancer, and men with a strong family history of breast, pancreatic, or ovarian cancer may have an increased risk of getting prostate cancer. This type of risk is related to genes. Generally speaking, African American men are more likely to get prostate cancer and are at increased risk to have a disease that is more aggressive or advanced.
What are the Signs and Symptoms?
In most cases, prostate cancer has no symptoms and is usually detected through screening. Screening means checking for disease in the absence of symptoms.
Early Detection Screening
Early detection offers the best chance for long-term survival, which is why the Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) blood test combined with a brief exam (DRE or Digital Rectal Exam) has become a standard in early detection. An abnormality does not necessarily mean cancer but can alert healthcare providers that additional tests, such as a prostate biopsy, may need to be considered. A prostate biopsy showing cancer cells is the only way to definitively diagnose prostate cancer.
It is important to weigh the risks and benefits of being screened before making an individual decision. You should have a conversation with your primary doctor or healthcare provider who can assist you with this decision.
Stony Brook Medicine’s Department of Urology and Stony Brook Cancer Center, in accordance with the National Comprehensive Cancer Network guidelines, recommend screenings for men 45-75 years of age who are at average risk, and age 40 for men at high risk of developing prostate cancer.
Not all prostate cancers are alike, and sometimes the best approach is simply to keep a watchful eye on the disease. Ultimately, patients who are diagnosed with prostate cancer have access to our multidisciplinary team of experts from Urology, Radiation Oncology, Medical Oncology to gain information about appropriate treatments.
Men who do not have prostate cancer are also encouraged to consult with one of our Urology experts for the management of benign prostate hyperplasia and/or urinary symptoms.
Stony Brook Urology and Free Prostate Cancer Screenings
Stony Brook Medicine's Department of Urology has a long-standing commitment to providing free prostate cancer screenings for at-risk individuals. The Prostate Care Program team has been recognized for their efforts by New York State Senators John Flanagan, Kenneth Lavalle, and New York State Assembly.
Participants must meet our guidelines in order to be eligible. Dr. Massimiliano Spaliviero, Director of the Stony Brook Prostate Care Program states that having knowledge of one’s PSA is “a starting point to an important discussion about prostate cancer.”
The Prostate Care Program offers free screenings throughout the year at various Urology practice locations across Suffolk County, Long Island.
Men who are found to have an abnormality (PSA, DRE, or both) are encouraged to follow up with one of our prostate experts in the Department of Urology to discuss specific options.
Our Next Free Prostate Cancer Screenings will be:
|Tuesday, September 19, 2023
6 - 7:30 pm
Advanced Specialty Care
500 Commack Rd, Suite 201B
Commack, NY 11725
|Wednesday, September 20, 2023
2 - 5 pm
Stony Brook Urology - East Setauket
24 Research Way, Suite 500
East Setauket, NY 11733
Please contact Elizabeth Schriener to schedule an appointment at 631-216-9181.
CLICK HERE to access our screening form to print, complete, and bring with you to the screening.
Para Español: Click here
Prostate Care Program:
Massimiliano Spaliviero, MD
Medical Director of Prostate Care Program
Shannen Harbourne, RN, BSN, MS, OCN
Care Program Nurse
Elizabeth Schriener, Senior Administrative Assistant