Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer among men in the United States—second only to skin cancer. Learn more about common symptoms and risk factors to help you identify potential prostate problems and how to take action.
Know your risks
The prostate gland is an organ in the male reproductive system. Prostate cancer begins when the cells in the prostate gland start to grow uncontrollably. Some common risk factors that may be linked to prostate cancer are:
- Age: Men age 50 years old or older are at a higher risk for developing prostate cancer.
- Race: African American men are more likely to get prostate cancer and are more than twice as likely to die from prostate cancer than other men.
- Family history: Having a father or brother who has had prostate cancer.
- Diet: Consuming a diet rich in red meat, processed meats, and foods high in fat.
- Weight: Being overweight may put you at greater risk for prostate cancer. A man is considered overweight if his waist is larger than 37 inches or his body mass index is 30 or higher.
Know the symptoms
If you notice or experience any prostate cancer symptoms, contact your physician or health care provider right away. Warning signs of prostate problems can include:
- Pain in your hip or lower back
- Pain or trouble using the restroom
- Loss of appetite or weight
- Bone pain
Reduce your risks
Here are some steps you and your loved ones can take that may reduce the risk of prostate cancer:
- Eat a healthy diet.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
- Get regular exercise.
- Stop smoking and reduce your alcohol intake.
- Get screened for prostate cancer.
Contact your physician if you have questions about prostate cancer or you plan to start a new diet or exercise plan. For resources and information about prostate cancer, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention prostate cancer website.