Cómo detectar el cáncer de próstata

¿Qué exámenes conviene hacer y desde cuándo? Informate para aconsejar a los hombres de tu familia.

El cáncer de próstata es uno de los tumores más frecuentes en los hombres y la segunda causa de mortalidad por cáncer después del pulmonar.

La próstata forma parte del aparato reproductor del hombre y se ubica alrededor de la uretra. Su función es producir un líquido que protege y nutre a los espermatozoides.

A diferencia de otras patologías oncológicas, el cáncer de próstata es una enfermedad muy heterogénea. Algunos tumores pueden evolucionar lentamente, como suele pasar en los hombres mayores de 75 años. Sin embargo, en pacientes jóvenes el curso de la enfermedad suele ser más agresivo.

La detección precoz ha posibilitado el hallazgo de tumores localizados. En esta situación los tratamientos son más efectivos.

Métodos de detección precoz

Como métodos de detección precoz se utilizan el examen de la próstata a través del tacto rectal y la determinación de Antígeno Prostático Específico (PSA) en una muestra de sangre.

Si bien este es un punto de controversia, en general se recomienda el control anual con ambos métodos desde los 50 años en pacientes sin síntomas o desde los 40 en pacientes con antecedentes familiares (de padre o hermanos).

Por otra parte, ante trastornos como dolor al orinar, disminución de la fuerza de la orina, goteo al finalizar la micción (que puede ser dolorosa o con ardor), menor volumen urinario y mayor frecuencia (especialmente por la noche), eyaculación dolorosa, presencia de sangre en orina o imposibilidad de orinar, se recomienda la consulta inmediata  para realizar los estudios específicos.

Fuente: Dra. María Victoria Costanzo, médica de planta del Instituto Alexander Fleming, para entremujeres[dot]com

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