Researchers reported on Monday that infertile men have an increased tendency to develop prostate cancer. Questions have been surfacing the health industry now on who will be benefited from the screening process for the disease.
Prostate cancer has been one of the most common forms of cancer among men, affecting 160 for every 100,000 every year, and killing 26 from them. While doctors have the option to screen it, many prefer not to since tumors grow slowly and never cause any harm.
Over the decade, upon the evaluation of 22,000 California men who has results of fertility during the years 1967 to1998, it showed that 1.2 percent of infertile men developed prostate cancer, compared to 0.4 percent for those men who were fertile.
After taking into consideration their age, infertility increased the odds of developing aggressive tumors 2.6 times, while a risk of 1.6 times for slow-growing cancers.
The ultimate risk of developing prostate cancer among men is very small, what is surprising is this high rate of high-grade prostate cancer. Dr. Thomas Walsh of the University of Washington said during an interview.
It has not yet been cleared how infertility has been linked to prostate cancer. But researchers have considered that the damages to the male sex chromosomes, through exposure to environmental toxins from the womb, may be involved.
Other risk factors that must be taken into consideration for prostate cancer includes older age, family history, being African-American and obesity.
The American Urological Association has recommended the screening for the male ages 40 and older. However, Dr. Walsh said that not all men with fertility problems must undergo the screening process.
We take care of a lot of prostate cancers that don't need to be treated. What we desperately need now are studies that will directly point out the markers of aggressiveness for this disease. said Dr. Otis Brawley, chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society.