Over 230,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer this year. By measuring disease aggressiveness, Prolaris allows healthcare professionals and their patients to make personalized treatment decisions.

According to the National Cancer Institute, about 240,000 American men are diagnosed with prostate cancer and 30,000 men die of the disease each year. Prostate cancer is the second most common type of cancer among men in the U.S., second only to skin cancer. The average age at the time of diagnosis is 70, and it is rarely found in men younger than 45.

The disease develops in a man’s prostate gland, which is a small (walnut-sized) gland in the reproductive system located under the bladder and in front of the rectum. This gland makes part of the seminal fluid that carries sperm out of the body during ejaculation.

The prostate surrounds the urethra, the tube that carries urine from the bladder to the penis. Because of that, one common sign of prostate problems is difficulty in urinating.

What Causes Prostate Cancer?

It is not yet known what specifically causes prostate cancer. However, there are some common risk factors that may increase the chance of developing the disease.

Those Who Are At Higher Risk of Prostate Cancer Include:*

  • African-American men
  • Men older than age 65
  • Men who have a father or brother with prostate cancer

Please note that having a risk factor doesn’t mean that you will develop prostate cancer. Most men who have these risk factors never develop the disease.

What Are The Symptoms of Prostate Cancer?

In its earliest stages, prostate cancer usually grows quietly, causing no detectable signs or symptoms. Your healthcare professional can screen for prostate cancer risk during these early stages, before symptoms appear, with a simple PSA blood test. Due to PSA testing, most cancers are found before a man has had a single symptom.

Once Prostate Cancer Has Advanced, It Can Cause These Symptoms:

  • Trouble starting and maintaining a steady stream of urine
  • Weaker urine stream than usual
  • Frequent urination
  • Increased urination at night
  • Painful urination
  • Blood in the urine or the semen
  • Swelling in the legs
  • Pain or discomfort in the pelvic region
  • Pain in the bones
  • Difficulty achieving an erection
  • Painful ejaculation

Using Molecular Diagnostic Testing to Guide Your Prostate Cancer Treatment**

If you are diagnosed with localized prostate cancer, there are multiple treatment options, including active surveillance, surgery, radiation and androgen deprivation therapy. Determining the best treatment option for you may be challenging, since most prostate cancers are slow growing, but some grow more rapidly and are more likely to spread to other parts of the body. Monitoring tests such as PSA and Gleason score provide useful information on how far the prostate cancer has progressed, but do not indicate how aggressive the cancer is.

Myriad offers a molecular diagnostic test called Prolaris® to help you and your healthcare professional understand the aggressiveness of your specific prostate cancer. This test measures how fast the tumor cells are dividing, providing an accurate assessment of cancer aggressiveness and additional insight into your chances of prostate cancer survival.1-6 For example, if the Prolaris score indicates that you have a less aggressive cancer, you may be a candidate for active surveillance. If the Prolaris score indicates that you have more aggressive disease, your healthcare professional may recommend more extensive treatment. Knowing how aggressive your prostate cancer is can help you and your healthcare professional make the best treatment decision for you.**

Learn more about Prolaris®.

*Assessment criteria are based on medical society guidelines.
**Any discussion of medical management options is for general informational purposes only and does not constitute a recommendation.  While genetic testing and medical society guidelines provide important and useful information, all medical management decisions should be made based on consultation between each patient and his or her healthcare professional.

 

References

1. Cuzick, J, et al. Prognostic value of an RNA expression signature derived from cell cycle proliferation genes in patients with prostate cancer: a retrospective study. Lancet 2011: 245-255.

2. Cuzick, J, et al. Prognostic value of a cell cycle progression signature for prostate cancer death in a conservatively managed needle biopsy cohort. British J Cancer 2012:1-5:1095-1099.

3. Cooperberg MR, et al. Validation of a cell-cycle progression gene panel to improve risk stratification in a contemporary prostatectomy cohort. J Clinical Oncol 2013:31(11):1428-34.

4. Freedland SJ, et al. Prognostic utility of cell cycle progression score in men with prostate cancer after primary external beam radiation therapy. Int J Radiat Oncol, Biol, Phys 2013:86(5):848-853.

5. Crawford ED, et al. Cell cycle progression score and treatment decisions in prostate cancer: results from an ongoing registry. Curr Med Res Opin 2014 Mar 13 [Epub ahead of print]

6. Bischoff, JT, et al. Prognostic utility of the CCP score generated from biopsy in men treated with prostatectomy. J. Urology 2014 [Epub ahead of print].