Increasingly, it seems as if I am hearing more and more about much younger guys being diagnosed. I don’t mean men who have a little bump in PSA and having gleason scores of six or less. I am talking about men who on diagnosis have prostate cancer that has left the capsule and already have mets.
It feels like advanced prostate cancer is becoming a disease of younger men as well as older guys. I don’t have any statistical proof and I don’t know how this could be evaluated. If it is true, it flies in the face of recent trends to limit the use of PSA tests. It also calls into question the current acceptable age for PSA screening.
These younger men are more impacted by the disease than older guys. They still are having their families and if they already have children they are still babies. Their relationships with their spouses are newer and less stable.
Not only will these men suffer from all the side effects from treatment, but because of the advanced nature of their disease when diagnosed they are more likely to die, leaving behind young wives and young children.
Prostate cancer is often called a cancer of old men. Yes many men with pc are older, but there are also many men who are not old and being diagnosed. I don’t know how the age statistics could be tracked, or if they are being tracked. I do believe that we would be very surprised if it was done.
Joel T Nowak MA, MSW
Don’t forget go to www.prostatescancerpetition.org on sign the Malecare petition to make prostate cancer a national priority.