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Prostate Cancer in African-American Men


Updated February 10, 2009

Facts About Prostate Cancer in Black Men

  1. Black men have significantly higher rates of prostate cancer.
  2. Black men have lower rates of screening for prostate cancer.
  3. Black men have, on average, more advanced and harder to cure prostate cancer at the time of diagnosis.
  4. Black men have a higher chance of dying from their prostate cancer.

What Should Be Done About This?

Black men should:

  1. Get screened for prostate cancer earlier than the standard guidelines suggest. This means most black men should start prostate cancer screening with yearly PSA tests and physical exams at age 40 and even earlier if a strong family history of prostate cancer exists.
  2. Be more aware of any symptoms that may signal that prostate cancer or another prostate condition such as BPH (enlarged prostate) have developed. Urinary symptoms are the most common early symptoms of prostate cancer.
  3. Talk to male family members about their increased risk of prostate cancer.

    Physicians, public health officials, and other community members should:

    1. Spread the word amongst the public about the increased rates of prostate cancer among black men.
    2. Encourage black men to participate in general health and prostate cancer screening.


    American Cancer Society : Cancer Facts and Figures, Atlanta, GA, American Cancer Society, 2004.

    Boyle P, Severi G, Giles GG: The epidemiology of prostate cancer. Urol Clin North Am 2003; 30:209.

    Gronberg H: Prostate cancer epidemiology. Lancet 2003; 361:859.

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