Risks and Prevention

How to monitor prostate cancer using active surveillance

Charlie Schmidt

Editor, Harvard Medical School Annual Report on Prostate Diseases

A woman’s testosterone-based vaginal cream linked to elevated testosterone in her husband

Charlie Schmidt

Editor, Harvard Medical School Annual Report on Prostate Diseases

A woman’s use of a testosterone-based vaginal cream may have contributed to a spike in her husband’s prostate-specific antigen and testosterone levels after he had his prostate removed to fight advanced prostate cancer.

Prostate cancer in second- and third-degree relatives elevates risk

Charlie Schmidt

Editor, Harvard Medical School Annual Report on Prostate Diseases

Men are at greater risk for developing prostate cancer if their fathers or brothers also developed the disease. A new study shows that having second- or third-degree relatives with the disease also increases a man’s risk.

Vasectomy, prostate cancer link still uncertain

Although a long-term study has shown that men who had a vasectomy have a slightly increased risk of developed high-grade prostate cancer, not all experts believe that the link is real.

Are testosterone supplements linked to cardiovascular problems?

A growing number of aging men are trying to hold on to their youthful vigor by taking testosterone. Unsettling study results suggest that men with low but “normal” testosterone levels who take a testosterone supplement may be increasing their risk of having a heart attack, stroke, or developing heart disease.

Low vitamin D tied to aggressive prostate cancer

Prostate cancer tends to be more aggressive in men with low levels of vitamin D. Among African American men, low vitamin D is also linked to a higher risk of developing prostate cancer.

Selenium, vitamin E supplements increase prostate cancer risk

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Former Executive Editor, Harvard Health

New results from a major clinical trial called SELECT show that taking selenium or vitamin E can increase the odds of developing prostate cancer. Bottom line: men shouldn’t take selenium or vitamin E as a way to prevent prostate cancer, or anything else for that matter.

Prostate cancer trajectory set early

In many men diagnosed with prostate cancer, the cancer cells grow so slowly that they never break free of the gland, spread to distant sites, and pose a serious risk to health and longevity. In others, cancer is fast growing and aggressive from the beginning. A new Harvard study shows that the aggressiveness of prostate cancer at diagnosis remains stable over time for most men.

High intake of omega-3 fats linked to increased prostate cancer risk

The omega-3 fats in fish have been linked to all sorts of health benefits, including protection against prostate cancer. But for the second time in two years, researchers have found a link between high levels of omega-3 fats in the blood and prostate cancer. Researchers at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle men with high levels of omega-3 fats were 43% more likely to have been diagnosed with prostate cancer than men with low levels. The finding were published online in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Vitamin E may indeed increase the risk of prostate cancer

It was once thought that taking vitamin E could reduce the risk of prostate cancer. However, recent research suggests this is not the case. Back in 2008 one large study, known as the Selenium and Vitamin E Cancer Prevention Trial (SELECT), showed that not only did vitamin E fail to decrease the risk of prostate […]