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More Sexual Partners Doubles the Risk of Developing Prostate Cancer: Study

According to a recent study, the risk of prosate cancer is doubled by multiple sexual partners

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FILE - A biotechnician demonstrates the loading of a genome sequencing machine at the J. Craig Venter Institute in Rockville, Maryland. Relative to their ability to pay, cancer patients in China and India face much higher prices than wealthier U.S. patients. VOA

Sydney, Nov 22, 2016: The more sexual partners a man has may double his risk of developing prostate cancer, a study has claimed.

The study found that men who had more than seven sexual partners in their lifetime were twice as likely to have prostate cancer than those with fewer than three partners.

Men who are sexually active earlier may also be a risk, the researchers said.

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“The more partners you had, the more orgasms you had, the younger you were when you first had sex, all pointed to an increased prostate cancer risk,” Visalini Nair-Shalliker, doctoral student at Cancer Council New South Wales in Australia, was quoted as saying to smh.com.au.

It’s believed this increased risk associated with sexual activity could be due to hormonal changes.

Sexual activity and metabolism were associated with antigen, a male sex hormone that is also strongly linked to the initiation of prostate cancer.

Other risk factors included having a father with a history of prostate cancer, a previous diagnosis of prostatitis or benign prostatic hyperplasia.

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In addition, the study found that being overweight or obese was also associated with increased risk of the disease, but to a lesser extent.

There was no association found between prostate cancer risk and circumcision, vasectomy or erectile function, the researchers observed.

It is important to identify risk factors so men could be given advice, and men aged over 50 who fell into those risk categories should speak to their doctors, especially if they had a family history of the disease, Nair-Shalliker said.

However, “we can’t make any recommendations around sexual activity because it’s multi-faceted. We’re not saying ‘increase or decrease your sexual activity’ because the evidence is still grey about that,” Nair-Shalliker noted, in the paper published in the journal in the International Journal of Cancer. (IANS)

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Death Rates from Prostate Cancer have Declined in Dozens of Countries: Study

Only four of the countries surveyed, including Bulgaria, saw an increased incidence of prostate cancer, it said

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FILE - Doctors treat a patient with prostate cancer at an operating room in Ramat Aviv Medical Center's Urology department in Tel Aviv, Israel, May 5, 2016. VOA

Death rates from prostate cancer — the most commonly diagnosed cancer in men — have stabilized or declined in dozens of countries since the turn of the century, the American Cancer Society reported Tuesday.

In 33 of 44 countries surveyed, the incidence of prostate cancer had stabilized in the last five years for which data was available — and in seven countries, it was down, the report found.

Only four of the countries surveyed, including Bulgaria, saw an increased incidence of prostate cancer, it said.

“In the most recent five years of data examined, prostate cancer incidence and mortality rates are decreasing or stabilizing in most parts of the world,” the study’s author MaryBeth Freeman said.

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Only four of the countries surveyed, including Bulgaria, saw an increased incidence of prostate cancer, it said. Pixabay

Prostate cancer deaths were down in 14 countries surveyed and stable in 54 others. Only three countries experienced a rise in prostate cancer deaths, according to the study findings, which were presented Tuesday at a conference in Atlanta.

The United States had the biggest drop in prostate cancers, which Freeman attributed to a decline in the use of a controversial diagnostic test that identified too many non-dangerous tumors.

The incidence of prostate cancers rose in the U.S. during the 1980s and early 1990s when the PSA, or Prostate-Specific Antigen, blood test became widely available.

The test is imprecise, however, and yields too many false positives. It identifies higher than normal levels of PSA, a protein produced by the prostate, which could be a sign of cancer but is more often a symptom of other diseases.

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“In the most recent five years of data examined, prostate cancer incidence and mortality rates are decreasing or stabilizing in most parts of the world,” the study’s author MaryBeth Freeman said. Pixabay

Moreover, some prostate cancers are not aggressive and do not grow enough to pose a risk.

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A false positive, on the other hand, can have harmful consequences for the patient: anxiety, complications linked to biopsies, or anti-cancer treatments.

In 2012, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, an expert panel that reviews the effectiveness of preventive clinical services, advised against use of the PSA test.

In 2018, it revised the recommendation to say that taking the test should be an “individual” decision for men 55 to 69. At 70 and after, it advised against its use. (VOA)