The sound of the word ‘cancer’ can be terrifying given the debilitating and painful nature of the dreaded disease. And for the patient diagnosed with a cancer, and for the family, it can be devastating. But, with the right approach, best of medication, precise treatment, and maximum care in the hands of expert doctors, this life-threatening disease can be eliminated, giving the survivor another lease of life. And this is precisely what cancer patients and their families can expect at one of the foremost healthcare institutions in the country – Fortis Hospital Bangalore.
Cancer treatment is one of hope at Fortis Hospital Bangalore, a formidable organization in healthcare excellence. Equipped with the best cancer specialists who have seen the various nuances of the disease in its different stages, Fortis Hospital Bangalore boasts of superior medical facilities to make the treatment of cancer a less painful and traumatic experience for both, the patients and their caregivers.
With the alarming increase in the number of cancer cases in the world and in India, there is a crucial need for optimal and effective cancer treatment coupled with empathetic care of patients. But, with advanced medical technology, along with highly proficient cancer care experts imparting their expertise in treating this debilitating disease, it is reassuring to know that an excellent care-giving and dedicated cancer treatment centre like Fortis Cancer Institute exists.
Fortis Cancer Institute was created with the primary aim of diagnosing, staging and treating cancers of all types in the best possible ways. It is a known fact that, just the way each individual is different from another, cancer cases also vary from case to case. This is why an excellent cancer care institute like Fortis Cancer Institute is a vital need to nip certain cancers in the first stages and give patients a greater chance at survival. Armed with a dedicated team of oncologists, radiation oncologists, radiologists, and oncosurgeons, as well as oncology support teams of nurses, dieticians and counselors, Fortis Cancer Institute is at the forefront of complete cancer care excellence.
Prostate cancer is one of the common kinds of cancer seen in males, and usually afflicts older males after the age of 60. It is also one of the curable cancers if detected early. The prostate is a male reproductive organ that is located underneath the bladder and around the urethra, the tube that passes urine and semen. The prostate is as big as a walnut and usually grows in size with age. Sperm-laden semen is produced in the prostate gland. Cancer of the prostate advances gradually and many men may not even know they suffer from it because it does not show up symptoms in many cases. It may be dangerous only if it grows and spreads rapidly. However, prostate cancer is treatable in the right hands of oncology specialists at Fortis Cancer Institute.
Prostate cancer manifests in an older healthy male when cancer-causing malignant cells afflict the healthy tissues in the prostate gland. While the exact reason for the cancer causing element is not known despite research, doctors pinpoint it to the environment. And yes, with increasing lifestyle changes, it is possible to have the cancer due to a reckless diet too. Some of the common risk factors causing prostate cancer are age and heredity. After the age of 60, many men are at a risk from prostate cancer since this disease rarely afflicts a younger male at 40. This is why screening of the prostate gland through rectal examinations is recommended by doctors for males from the age of 60 onwards.
While prostate cancer may not show up the symptoms in some males, in others there may be a few tell-tale signs to look out for. One of the foremost signs that issue a warning that something is not alright with the prostate gland is the weak flow of urine or the urge to urinate frequently. This is because in a healthy, normal prostate, there is no obstruction of urine or semen.
Here are some of the symptoms of prostate cancer:
While these symptoms could be signs of prostate cancer, they could also be caused by other health conditions such as enlargement of the prostate gland that may cause the blockage in the urethra or bladder.
The best way to detect any unusual symptoms in the prostate gland is to go through a physical examination to check for any signs of the disease. These are some of the common physical tests to determine or rule out prostate cancer:
Digital rectal exam (DRE): In this test, the male’s rectum is scrutinized by inserting a lubricated and gloved finger and feeling around the area for any enlargement, lumps or abnormal growths.
Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test : Through this test, the level of PSA in the blood is measured. The PSA is a substance manufactured by the prostate. It has been observed that an increased amount of PSA has been found in the blood of men who have prostate cancer. PSA levels may also be high in men who have an infection or inflammation of the prostate or Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH), an enlarged, but noncancerous, prostate.
Transrectal Ultra Sound: In this ultra sound test, a finger-sized probe is inserted into the patient’s rectum to check for an unusual prostate condition. Here, the ultra sound involves the use of high energy sound waves or ultrasound to bounce off the inner organs and tissues and emit echoes. Based on these echoes, sonologists are able to create a sonogram image.
Transrectal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI): This advanced technology harnesses the use of a probe that is inserted into the rectum. It uses a strong magnet, radio waves and a computer to compile and collect a number of pictures of the inner recesses of the male’s body, revealing all the minute details of the prostate. With the help of these images, the Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) technology creates images with utmost clarity. Transrectal MRI is conducted to monitor the spread of the cancer beyond the prostate to other organs in the body. Transectal MRI is also called Nuclear MRI.
Biopsy: Following a number of diagnostic tests, some oncologists may also prescribe a biopsy to ascertain the diagnosis. In a biopsy, a few parts of the cells or tissues are cut and observed under a microscope to look for any cancer cells. In the hi-tech lab, the pathologists check and measure the spread of the cancer on the Gleason score. This score determines the rate at which the cancer will spead. The higher the score, the bigger the chance of the cancer to spread, and the lower the Gleason score, less likelihood of the cancerous cells to spread malignantly.
Transrectal biopsy: In this procedure, a thin needle is inserted in the patient through the rectum and all the way into the prostate gland. Here, a transrectal ultrasound helps in maneuvering the needle to reach the target where samples of the prostate tissue are taken for analysis and further diagnosis.
Once the patient is put through a precise number of tests to determine the possibility of the cancer, a number of treatment options are presented to the patient and the family members who can best decide on the kind of treatment that is in the patient’s best interest.
Depending on the extent of the spread of the cancer in the prostate, the renowned doctors at Fortis Cancer Institute plan the next line of treatment that is best suited for the patient. Before that, the patient’s health and family history, other underlying health conditions, medications, etc are noted and stored in the hospital databank. The stage of the disease is determined depending on the patient’s age, level of PSA, grade of the tumour, the Gleason score and the extent of the spread to other organs.
Once the oncologists have diagnosed that it is indeed prostate cancer the patient is suffering from, the entire cancer care team at Fortis Cancer Institute brainstorms on the best line of treatment that is in the patient’s health interest. The treatment modality is based on a stringent set of multiple treatment measures with a combination of what will work best in the circumstances. It is a given that the eminent oncology team at Fortis Cancer Institute designs the treatment with the right balance of surgical intervention, radiation therapy, hormone therapy and chemotherapy.
The very thought of having cancer can be a nerve-racking ordeal especially in the old age. However, in the case of prostate cancer, there have been very rare cases of patients dying from the disease. That is the reason prostate cancer patients have hope for survival in the face of this kind of cancer.
With 56 hospitals across the nation and over 10,000 beds, Fortis Healthcare Limited is a leading integrated healthcare delivery service provider in India. For over 26 years, Fortis Hospitals have been committed to the cause of getting people back to their lives faster and stronger.