How Does Prostate Cancer Spread?

How does prostate cancer spread? One way this occurs is when early treatments for prostate cancer don’t work, allowing cancer to spread, usually slowly. The cancer cells sometimes survive inside the prostate gland and can spread further to other areas of the body.

What Determines Treatment For Prostate Cancer

If prostate cancer is detected, treatment might not be recommended right away. This is because the prostate cancer cells normally grow so slowly. In this case you might be a candidate for “active surveillance.” This means that you and your physician will work together to track the growth of your cancer rather than proceeding to radiation or surgery.

Tests will be conducted periodically to watch the growth. This is an effective plan if there are no symptoms and as long as the cancer continues to grow slowly.

Watchful Waiting

3D illustration showing presence of tumor inside prostate gland which compresses urethra

Another treatment plan is one where you do the same thing as active surveillance except there are no periodic tests. This is a good option for those who don’t want treatment or can’t physically endure treatments due to other issues.

Of course, this can be risky since the cancer may grow and you wouldn’t necessarily know. In some cases, it could be too late to have treatment.

Metastasis

When prostate cancer cells spread to other areas of the body, this is known as metastasis. The truth is, prostate cancer can spread anywhere in the body. Metastatic prostate cancer is known as stage 4. It can stay localized in the pelvic region or it can spread elsewhere.

It commonly spreads to the lymph nodes, bones, liver, brain, and lungs.

Cancer is always named by the place it began, so even when it spreads to another organ, it is still called prostate cancer.

Signs Of Prostate Cancer

Although prostate cancer is slow growing and can take years for symptoms to appear, men should be periodically checked with a PSA test.

Signs of prostate cancer include trouble urinating, blood in the urine, difficulty getting an erection, and pain in the back, hips, ribs, or other bones.

If a diagnosis is made, treatment will be determined by your age, any other medical issues you may have, the prognosis (what stage is the cancer), and your feelings about the side effects.

Our board-certified radiologists at Southwest Diagnostic Center for Molecular Imaging provide state of the art testing for prostate cancer in Dallas, TX. Please call us at (214) 345-8300 to schedule a prostate cancer screening.

Call us at (214) 345-8300