Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men, and this March, for Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, men are being encouraged to know the symptoms and not to shy away from any symptoms they have.
North Lincolnshire Council and Humberside Fire and Rescue Service have joined forces to back this campaign and raise awareness.
Prostate cancer is the third most common cancer in North Lincolnshire, potentially affecting an estimated one in six men.
Nearly a quarter of all new cancer diagnoses in males are prostate cancer.
Each year an average of 120 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer in North Lincolnshire.
Most diagnoses are in men aged 50 and over, with more than half of cases diagnosed in males aged 70 and above.
In North Lincolnshire around 30 men die of prostate cancer every year.
More than half of men with the disease present in the early stages (one or two). If treated in the early stages, some cases of prostate cancer can be successfully treated.
Some men can put off seeing their GP due to embarrassment.
Symptoms of prostate cancer include:
Needing to urinate more frequently, often during the night
Needing to rush to the toilet
Difficulty in starting to wee (hesitancy)
Straining or taking a long time while urinating
Feeling that your bladder has not emptied fully
Councillor Carl Sherwood, cabinet member for health and well being at North Lincolnshire Council, said: “Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men and usually develops slowly.
“There may be no signs for many years.
“Therefore, if you do have any of the symptoms, it is vital that you go see your GP as soon as possible to get checked out.
“There may not be anything wrong, but it is always best to check.
“We are showing our support this Prostate Cancer Awareness Month to help raise awareness of this disease that affects so many men each year.”
Martin Hewitt, Humberside Fire and Rescue Service Station Manager said: “Over the last two years Humberside Fire and Rescue Service has been actively delivering the prostate cancer awareness message.
“As part of this ongoing process, we will continue to work in partnership with the NHS and North Lincolnshire Council to deliver this very important message. We are all about protecting our communities and looking after the most vulnerable, so this initiative to raise awareness of prostate cancer amongst our staff and the wider public is a perfect fit. The service will be taking part in numerous events across the region in the coming months to highlight this life saving issue.
“Our aim is to inform people of the signs and symptoms of the cancer and the need to get checked out and treated early. This will mean that their chances of recovery could be much better.”
Jacky Lee from Scunthorpe set up a support group for people affected by prostate cancer with her late husband, David Lee, in June 2012 called PROCAS Lincs and Humber.
David died at the end of 2012 after an eight year battle with prostate cancer.
The group meets every third Monday of the month (except December) at St Bernadette’s Parish Centre, Ashby Road, Scunthorpe from 6.30pm to 8.30pm.
Jacky said: “We at the charity are currently involved in a ten year strategy to change prostate cancer treatment, and over the last few years there has already been a massive improvement, as now 70 per cent of those diagnosed go onto make a recovery, where only a few years ago that number was only 30 per cent.
“We meet on a monthly basis and are an independent support group for patients, wives, partners, family, friends and carers of anyone affected by prostate cancer.
“There is a small committee, all volunteers and our funding is entirely from donations, mainly from local organisations and also from Procas members themselves.
Although when we first started the group, we did also receive a much-needed grant from Macmillan Cancer Support to help towards start-up costs.
“Since starting the group in 2012, membership is steadily increasing and everyone who attends appreciates the support the group offers them.”
For more details on the support group they can be emailed: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dave and Jacky were recognised for their fundraising work and raising £70,000 for Prostate Cancer UK at the 2012 North Lincolnshire Council Community Champion Awards, having been named winners of the Outstanding Achievement Adult category.
* For more information about prostate cancer visit http://prostatecanceruk.org/. Prostate Cancer UK has a simple ambition – to stop men dying from prostate cancer. Shifting the science over the next ten years to focus on radical improvements in diagnosis, treatment, prevention, and support.