Prostate cancer is a form of malignancy that forms in tissues of the prostate. According to the American Cancer Society, the median age for men during 2002-2006 who were diagnosed with prostate cancer was 68 years. However, prostate cancer can occur in younger males as well. Also during this time, prostate cancer incidence rates rose in men until about age 70 and lowered thereafter. In 2010, there were over 200,000 new cases of prostate cancer in the United States and over 32,000 men died from the disease. Prostate cancer is recognized to be the most common non-skin cancer in the United States among men.
There are some factors that can increase a man's risk of developing prostate cancer. Men who are 50 years of age or older or who are African American have an increased risk of developing prostate cancer. If there's a history of prostate cancer in one's family, especially if a brother, son, or father had prostate cancer, there's a greater likelihood of developing prostate cancer. In addition, alcohol consumption, a high fat diet, and maintaining a sedentary lifestyle have all been linked to an increased risk of developing prostate cancer.
Some symptoms of prostate cancer include urinary problems, sexual dysfunction, blood in the urine, prostate enlargement, the presence of prostate nodules, elevated PSA levels in the blood, and frequent pain in the hips, lower back, or upper thighs.
Prostate cancer can be detected before a person has any symptoms. The two most commonly used screening tests are a blood test called a PSA and a digital rectal exam (DRE). These two tests can detect the possible presence of prostate cancer, even in patients who do not have any other overt symptoms. When screening is done properly, prostate cancers may be diagnosed at an early stage.
Once prostate cancer is diagnosed, there are a variety of treatment options, including radiation (targeted or radioactive seed implants), surgery alone or in conjunction with other treatments, hormonal therapy, and cryotherapy.
Unfortunately, some doctors, including urologists and primary care physicians, still fail to recommend that men, even those men with one or more of the risk factors for prostate cancer, receive annual prostate cancer screenings. Similarly, when screening is undertaken, sometimes the results are misinterpreted or not communicated to the patient. Likewise, some doctors may not always recognize the symptoms of prostate cancer and may prescribe medications to treat benign conditions rather than attempting to discover the potential causes of a patient's symptoms. Healthcare providers who fail to diagnose prostate cancer may be held responsible for any injuries, damages, and losses resulting from their negligent care.
New Jersey medical malpractice cases involving cancer misdiagnosis or the failure to timely diagnose cancer are a complex matter and should be handled by attorneys with the requisite experience to pursue such claims. The attorneys at Blume Forte have extensive case experience in trying and settling cases alleging a delay in diagnosing prostate cancer.
Do you or someone you love have prostate cancer? Do you feel that it was misdiagnosed or could have been diagnosed earlier? Contact the New Jersey failure to diagnos cancer lawyers at Blume Forte. With the assistance of our medical staff, we will evaluate your medical records to determine if your health care providers deviated from accepted standards of care related to the screening and diagnosis of your prostate cancer. We will only pursue cases that are meritorious. Call us at (973) 635-5400 to learn more.
If you need to consult a New Jersey personal injury attorney, you need to contact Blume Forte Fried Zerres & Molinari. The initial consultation is always free.