Prostate Center Paris

Prostate cancer symptoms, diagnosis and causes

Prostate cancer symptoms : what are they ?

Symptoms of prostate cancer vary, but recognizing the early signs is crucial. Urinary problems, such as changes in urinary frequency and flow, can be initial indicators. Pain or discomfort during urination can also be an early sign. These symptoms can be subtle, so careful monitoring is essential.

Recognizing Early Signs

Recognizing the early signs of prostate cancer involves paying attention to a number of significant indicators: 

  • Urinary problems: Increased frequency of urination and difficulty starting or stopping urine flow may be warning signs.
  • Pelvic pain: Although often subtle, the onset of pain in the pelvic region can also indicate the early presence of cancer.
  •  Pain or discomfort during micturition: This symptom should not be overlooked as a potential sign of disease. 


Advanced prostate cancer symptoms and complications

Advanced symptoms of prostate cancer are of paramount importance in understanding disease progression and planning medical interventions. Here are some key points to consider:

  •  Increased urinary problems :
    • Increased frequency of urination.
    • Increasing difficulty initiating or stopping urinary flow.
    • Persistent pelvic pain.
  • Bone pain :
    • Significant sign of possible cancer metastasis to bone.
    • Can be localized or widespread, impacting mobility and quality of life.
  • Persistent fatigue :   
    • Severe advanced symptoms that can interfere with daily activities.
  • Unexplained weight loss :
    • Frequently associated with advanced prostate cancer.
    • Reflects increased physiological load and metabolic disturbance.
  • Complications and metastases :
    • Metastases to other organs such as the lungs, liver or lymph nodes.
    • Affect overall prognosis by making cancer more difficult to treat.
    • Cascade of health problems, exacerbating symptoms and limiting treatment options

Prostate cancer: Diagnosis

Diagnosis of prostate cancer is based on a series of screening tests and confirmatory procedures, with biopsy being a fundamental step. Screening tests such as PSA and physical examinations such as the digital rectal exam (DRE) are essential tools. These tests, while not providing definitive diagnoses, serve as potential indicators of the presence of abnormalities. Diagnosis is often confirmed by biopsy, a procedure involving the removal of prostate tissue samples for in-depth analysis. This process determines the exact nature of the cells and confirms the presence of cancerous cells.

Prostate biopsy: Confirming the diagnosis

Biopsy confirmation is a crucial step in the diagnosis of prostate cancer, providing the detailed information needed for treatment planning. This procedure involves taking samples of prostate tissue for in-depth analysis. During biopsy, special needles are inserted through the rectal wall to reach the prostate and collect tissue fragments. 

These samples are then examined under a microscope to assess the presence of cancer cells and determine their aggressiveness. Understanding the biopsy process is essential for patients, enabling them to make informed decisions about their future treatment. Although biopsy is a common procedure, it carries some potential risks, including infection or bleeding. 

PSA: Screening tests

Screening tests, such as PSA and DRE, are essential for the early detection of prostate cancer. PSA, a protein produced by the prostate, is measured in the blood to assess prostate health. Elevated levels may indicate abnormalities, but are not a definitive diagnosis. The digital rectal exam assesses the size and texture of the prostate, providing additional information. It's crucial to understand that these tests, while powerful indicators, do not make a final diagnosis. 

Elevated PSA levels may require a biopsy for confirmation. Understanding these tests goes beyond recognizing them, and encourages men to take an active role in their health. Involvement in screening contributes significantly to early detection, facilitating rapid intervention and improving the chances of successful treatment. Encouraging this active involvement remains essential to promoting men's health and fighting prostate cancer.


PSA levels: Exploring the data


A level of PSA, or prostate-specific antigen, between 4 and 10 nanograms per milliliter of blood, can raise concerns about prostate health. Although this figure is generally considered slightly elevated, it does not necessarily constitute confirmation of prostate cancer. A PSA level in this range can result from a variety of factors, such as inflammation of the prostate or benign prostatic hyperplasia. However, these results often prompt doctors to carry out further investigations, such as biopsies, to rule out the possibility of cancer. It's essential to stress that elevated PSA levels are not specific to cancer, and a thorough clinical evaluation is necessary to understand the patient's specific situation. Regular medical follow-up and open communication with healthcare professionals are crucial in determining the best approach and appropriate treatment plan.


When PSA (prostate-specific antigen) test results fall between 10 and 20 nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL), it can raise concerns about prostate health. A PSA level in this range may indicate a variety of conditions, including prostate cancer. However, it's crucial to stress that high PSA levels are not a direct confirmation of the presence of cancer. Other factors, such as inflammation of the prostate or benign prostatic hyperplasia, can also contribute to this elevation. Men with a PSA between 10 and 20 ng/mL are often referred for further investigation, including biopsies, to determine the underlying cause. It is imperative to consult a healthcare professional for an accurate assessment and to discuss possible treatment options based on the results and overall health.

Causes of Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer is the result of a complex combination of factors, among which age, family history, race and genetic predisposition play a central role. Aging, family ties, ethnic disparities and genetic influences all contribute to defining individual risk. By assessing these elements, it becomes possible to adopt personalized prevention strategies, underlining the importance of discussions with healthcare professionals for a proactive approach to prostate cancer.

Risk Factors

Risk factors for prostate cancer encompass a range of factors that influence the individual's likelihood of developing the disease. Age, as the first factor, is a significant variable, since risk increases proportionally with advancing age. 

 Genetic predisposition introduces a final element, with each individual having a unique genetic profile that can influence prostate cancer risk. A thorough understanding of these factors provides a sound basis for accurate risk assessment, encouraging proactive management of men's health. In summary, conscious consideration of these diverse factors enables men to adopt a holistic approach to prostate cancer prevention, integrating the diversity of these elements into their care pathway.