Prostate cancer symptoms: Signs to look out for during sex that may signal the condition

Prostate cancer symptoms don’t usually appear until the cancer has grown large enough to put pressure on the tube that carries urine from the bladder out of the penis, known as the urethra. It’s important to recognise symptoms because prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men in the UK.


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When the cancer affects the urethra, a person may notice changes when they pee.

But the condition can also affect aspects of a person’s sex life.

According to Mayo Clinic, prostate cancer may cause blood to appear in a person’s semen and erectile dysfunction.

As well as putting pressure on the urethra, prostate cancer can affect surrounding glands or blood vessels in and around the male reproductive system.

When this happens, these structures can get blocked or irritated causing blood to appear in semen.

Other symptoms of prostate cancer

Other symptoms of prostate cancer are listed by the NHS as:

  • An increased need to pee
  • Straining while you pee
  • A feeling that your bladder has not fully emptied

The health body advises: “These symptoms should not be ignored, but they do not mean you have prostate cancer.

“It’s more likely they’re caused by something else, such as prostate enlargement.”

If you experience any of these symptoms, see your GP.

What causes prostate cancer

There’s no clear cause of prostate cancer, but a number of things have been linked to an increased risk of the disease developing.

According to Cancer Research UK, one risk factor is age.


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The charity explains: “Prostate cancer is more common in older men. Prostate cancer is most common in men aged 75 to 79 years.

“One in six men in the UK will get prostate cancer at some point in their lives.”

Other risk factors include ethnicity – prostate cancer is more common in black-African men than white men – being overweight or obese, and having a family history of prostate cancer.

Treatment for prostate cancer

For someone diagnosed with prostate cancer, a team of specialists will meet to discuss the best possible treatment.

Macmillan Cancer Support advises: “Your doctor will explain the different treatments and their side effects. They will also talk to you about the things you should consider when making treatment decisions.

“Your treatment will depend on the stage of your cancer.

“You can read overviews of treatment options for early, locally advanced and advanced prostate cancer.

“Treatment may include radiotherapy, surgery and hormonal therapy.”

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