Early screening key for long-term prostate cancer survival
Less than 70 percent of those afflicted with prostate cancer in China survive as long as five years, while the long-term survival rate in the West is almost 100 percent, thanks to wide coverage of early screening, local medical experts told the Pujiang Prostate Cancer Forum in Shanghai today.
Both the incidence and mortality of prostate cancer in China keep rising because of lifestyle changes. There are 72,000 new cases every year in the country, making it a major threat to elderly men's health.
In Shanghai, prostate cancer is the fourth most common cancer for men, and the top urological cancer.
"As our lifestyle and diets are increasingly Westernized, there will be more prostate cancer cases," said Dr Ye Dingwei of the Shanghai Cancer Center and chairman of the forum. "In addition to a healthy lifestyle, early and regular screenings are the key for prostate cancer prevention and control. Nearly 70 percent of patients in China are diagnosed in the middle or terminal stage. The lack of genetic research also results in a lack of precise therapy."
Ye has been promoting community-based prostate cancer screening for years, and launched a prostate cancer screening outpatient service at Shanghai Cancer Center.
Since the outpatient service kicked off late last year, 150 people have received screenings and 21 have been diagnosed with prostate cancer, including 18 in the early stage.
"Such screenings are very meaningful, as most patients identified in the early stage can be cured," Ye said.
In addition to promoting public education and enhancing early screening, Ye's team introduced a whole-process precise treatment, which not only targets the cancer to ensure patients' long-term survival, but also focuses on patients' life quality by protecting and preserving their urinary control and sexual ability.
"We protect relevant blood vessels and nerves during surgery and offer after-surgery rehabilitation for patients," he said.
Experts said they have also carried out genetic research on prostate cancer patients in China in order to find more targeted therapies for Chinese patients.