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Prostate cancer most common in UK 'in 15-20 years'

Prostate cancer has very few symptoms, Owen Sharp said. Credit: Daybreak/ITV

Prostate cancer will become the most common cancer in the UK "in the next 15-20 years".

Health charity chief Owen Sharp spoke to Daybreak about the health problems caused by prostate cancer and urged men to start talking to their GP about it.

"All the statistics say that prostate cancer is currently the most common cancer among men, it's about as common as breast cancer. Within the next 15-20 years it will be the most common cancer in this country.

"For the majority of the men who have it, they don't have any symptoms. That is the very reason why you need to go to the doctor, particularly when you get close to 50 and see if the test is right for you."

Only 'one in 10' GPs discuss prostate cancer

Only 10% of GPs discuss prostate cancer with their male patients, often failing to initiate the discussion, a poll found.

GPs must be more vocal about the risk of prostate cancer, a charity has said. Credit: PA

The survey of 500 GPs across the UK found many men were risking their health by not discussing the cancer with their doctor, Prostate Cancer UK found.

The risk of developing prostate cancer increases with age, typically from a man's fifties onwards.

Each year, around 41,000 men in the UK are diagnosed with prostate cancer and 11,000 die from the disease.


Guidance calls for 'regular check-ups' for some men

Professor Mark Baker, director of Nice's Centre for Clinical Practice, says that the "surveillance" protocol for men with slow-growing prostate cancer would involve "regular check-ups" instead of "radical treatment".

Prostate cancer can be very slow growing and whilst many men will have a cancer that won't cause them any harm in their lifetime, nearly 10,000 men still die every year in England and Wales.

The updated guideline includes a number of new recommendations on the swift diagnosis and treatment of different stages of the disease and a new protocol for men who choose active surveillance, which involves regular check-ups to see if and how the cancer is developing, rather than radical treatment.

– Professor Mark Baker, nice

Prostate cancer is most common type in men

  • Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men
  • It accounts for more than a quarter of all male cancer diagnoses in the UK
  • It is predominantly a disease of older men (aged 65–79 years)
  • There is a higher incidence of and mortality from prostate cancer in men of black African-Caribbean descent

'Surveillance' may be offered in prostate cancer cases

Some men with prostate cancer should be offered "surveillance" rather than treatment, according to new guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice).

Prostate cancer is the most common type of cancer diagnosed in men Credit: Bernd Weissbrod/DPA/Press Association Images

Doctors treating sufferers deemed to have "intermediate" or "low" risk prostate cancer should consider offering monitoring rather than radical surgery or radiotherapy, the guidance says.

According to Nice, prostate cancer can be "slow growing" and many men will have cancer that will not cause them any harm in their lifetime.

Meanwhile treatment options, including surgery and radiotherapy, can have "serious side effects", such as erectile dysfunction and fertility and continence problems.


Omega 3 fatty acids 'play a role' in prostate cancer

Omega 3 fatty acids could increase the risk of high-grade prostate cancer by 71 per cent, according to a new study.

Scientists confirmed that omega-3 fatty acids "play a role in prostate cancer occurrence".

It was found that men with the highest levels of omega-3 fatty acids were significantly more likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer than those with lower levels.

High blood concentrations of all three omega-3 fatty acids, commonly found in supplements EPA, DPA and DHA, were linked to the findings.

People have previously taken omega-3 supplements to protect against heart attacks and strokes, cope with arthritis, boost concentration levels and prevent behavioural disorders in children.

Omega-3 fatty acids 'linked to prostate cancer'

Omega-3 fatty acids, taken by millions of people as a health supplement, could trigger aggressive prostate cancer, a study claims.

Research has shown the substance could increase the risk of high-grade disease by 71%.

Omega-3 fatty acids are derived from fish oils Credit: Press Association

Taking omega-3 was also associated with a 44% greater chance of developing low-grade prostate cancer. Overall, the fatty acids raised the risk of all prostate cancers by 43%.

Writing in the online edition of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute scientists said people considering increasing their intake of omega-3 "should consider its potential risks".

  1. Calendar

Emmerdale's Gemma Oaten stands by her dad

Emmerdale actress Gemma Oaten and her family came into the Calendar studio to talk about how her father, Dennis, survived prostate cancer.

During Calendar, the family watched our film about Lynne Cramphorn, whose husband, West Yorkshire's Chief Constable Colin Cramphorn, died from prostate cancer.

Dennis Oaten told Christine and John how too many men think "it will never happen to you". It was only at the insistence of his wife, Marg, that he finally went to the doctor.

And Gemma will be appearing on Daybreak, as part of ITV's Stand By Your Man prostate cancer campaign, tomorrow morning.

To find out how you can pledge your support for our campaign here

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