Op/Ed: Chesapeake Urology Continues Prostate Cancer Awareness Campaign
Patti LaBelle Concert, 5k Run/Walk, Screenings at black churches comprise ’08 efforts
(PIKESVILLE – August 8, 2008) - www.GreatProstateCancerChallenge.com describes the efforts of Chesapeake Urology to make a difference in the community as it relates to prostate cancer. We believe we can make men aware of this cancer by providing screening opportunities for those men that do not have insurance or do not have a chance to visit the doctor and also raise money for much need research. We can make a difference! Further, we are committed and passionate about fulfilling our vision, which is "to do for men's health and prostate cancer what organizations like Koman has done for women's health and breast cancer."
Our event is called The Great Prostate Cancer Challenge. This year we have taken it from its start here in Baltimore last year, to Nashville, Richmond, Indianapolis and Harrisburg. Next year we hope to be in 10 additional cities.
This year we have three events that will allow us to fulfill our vision. First, we have a benefit concert featuring Patti LaBelle at Pier 6 on September 6th. Senator Ben Cardin, Congressman Elijah Cummings and Mayor Sheila Dixon will be attending as well of many of the prominent clergy in the African-American community, such as Dr. A.C.D. Vaughn, Dr. Harold Carter, Sr., and Rev. Dr. Jamal Harrison Bryant. This event will allow us to engage and educate the African-American community, and then entertain them. Vic Carter, the lead anchor for WJZ TV 13 is the host for the evening.
Second, we will be doing seven free prostate cancer screening in conjunction with 7 of the larger African-American church's on Saturday and Sunday between August 10th and October 19th. We hope to screen 2,000 men. This will save lives!
The third event is the second annual 5K Walk/Run at St. Joseph Medical Center on Sunday, September 14th at 8 am. The proceeds from all of three events go to funding prostate cancer research and researchers through our national association, The American Urological Foundation.
My goal for the 5K is to have 3,000 walkers and runners and raise $300,000. Last year was our first year and it was amazingly successful; we had 1,100 runners and raised $135,000. This year we have already raised over $250,000.
What I would like from you is your support and hope that you can help us get the word out about the 5K Walk/Run. Lenny Moore, former Baltimore Colts Hall of Fame running back is our Honorary Chairman. WJZ-TV 13 is our major sponsor and 13’s Kai Jackson is the emcee for the event.
I am very proud of what we have accomplished so far but there is much to do. You can help make this an even bigger success. Help me get the word out! We can have an effect on prostate cancer just like Koman has and do it with just as much passion.
Facts on Prostate Cancer (According to The Prostate Cancer Foundation):
How common is prostate cancer?
Prostate cancer is the most common non-skin cancer in America, affecting 1 in 6 men.
- In 2008, more than 186,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer, and more than 28,000 men will die from the disease. One new case occurs every 2.5 minutes and a man dies from prostate cancer every 19 minutes.
- It is estimated that there are more than 2 million American men currently living with prostate cancer. Visit the About Prostate Cancer section for more information.
How does prostate cancer compare with other cancers?
- A non-smoking man is more likely to develop prostate cancer than he is to develop colon, bladder, melanoma, lymphoma and kidney cancers combined. In fact, a man is 35% more likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer than a woman is to be diagnosed with breast cancer.
Are some men more likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer?
- Older age, African American race, and a family history of the disease can all increase the likelihood of a man being diagnosed with the disease.
- As men increase in age, their risk of developing prostate cancer increases exponentially. Although only 1 in 10,000 under age 40 will be diagnosed, the rate shoots up to 1 in 39 for ages 40 to 59, and 1 in 14 for ages 60 to 69. More than 65% of all prostate cancers are diagnosed in men over the age of 65.
- Men with a single first-degree relative—father, brother or son—with a history of prostate cancer are twice as likely to develop the disease, while those with two or more relatives are nearly four times as likely to be diagnosed. The risk is highest in men whose family members were diagnosed before age 65. Visit the Risk Factors for Prostate Cancer section for more information.
How curable is prostate cancer?
- As with all cancers, "cure" rates for prostate cancer describe the percentage of patients likely remaining disease-free for a specific time. In general, the earlier the cancer is caught, the more likely it is for the patient to remain disease-free.
- Because approximately 90% of all prostate cancers are detected in the local and regional stages, the cure rate for prostate cancer is very high—nearly 100% of men diagnosed at this stage will be disease-free after five years. By contrast, in the 1970s, only 67% of men diagnosed with local or regional prostate cancer were disease-free after five years.
What are the symptoms of prostate cancer?
- If the cancer is caught at its earliest stages, most men will not experience any symptoms. Some men, however, will experience symptoms such as frequent, hesitant, or burning urination, difficulty in having an erection, or pain or stiffness in the lower back, hips or upper thighs.
- Because these symptoms can also indicate the presence of other diseases or disorders, men who experience any of these symptoms will undergo a thorough work-up to determine the underlying cause of the symptoms.
If there are no symptoms, how is prostate cancer detected?
- Screening for prostate cancer can be performed in a physician’s office using two tests: the PSA (prostate-specific antigen) blood test and the digital rectal exam (DRE).
- The American Cancer Society recommends that both the PSA and DRE should be offered annually, beginning at age 50, to men who have at least a 10-year life expectancy. Men at high risk, such as African American men and men with a strong family history of one or more first-degree relatives diagnosed at an early age should begin testing at age 45. Men at even higher risk, due to multiple first-degree relatives affected at an early age, could begin testing at age 40. Visit the Detection & Screening section for more information.
How is prostate cancer treated?
- There are a wide variety of treatment options available for men with prostate cancer, including surgery, radiation therapy, hormone therapy and chemotherapy, any or all of which might be used at different times depending on the stage of disease and the need for treatment.
Consultation with all three types of prostate cancer specialists—a urologist, a radiation oncologist and a medical oncologist—will offer the most comprehensive assessment of the available treatments and expected outcomes. Visit the Treatment section for more information.