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Penile cancer occurs when cancerous cells form on tissues of the penis. If caught early, penile cancer is treatable. In early stages, a cancerous tumour can be removed with little or no damage to the penis. But if it is diagnosed late, a man may lose part of or all of his penis and sometimes his life too. Hence, it’s vital that you know more about this cancer.
But first, a small primer on the penis.
The penis has two types of erectile tissues, the spongy tissue that gets engorged with blood leading to an erection:
- Corpora cavernosa: This tissue forms most of the penis.
- Corpus spongiosum: This tissue forms a small portion of the penis. It also surrounds the urethra, a tube that transports urine and sperm to outside.
The erectile tissue comes wrapped in connective tissue and skin to form the organ.
Penile cancer is usually found on the ‘glans’ or tip of the penis, but can also occur on the shaft of the penis. Some of the common symptoms of penile cancer include sores and lumps on the penis, redness or irritation on the penis and blood discharge.
Factors that increase the risk of developing penile cancer
- Infection with human papillomavirus (HPV): This virus causes cervical cancer in women. Unprotected skin-to-skin contact as well as unprotected sex with multiple partners, increases the risk of a man getting HPV infection.
- Not being circumcised at birth: Circumcision, an operation in which a part or the entire foreskin is removed surgically is a big protection from penile cancer.
- Phimosis: This is a condition in which the foreskin cannot be pulled back over the glans or tip of the penis.
- Poor hygiene
- UV treatment for psoriasis
- Use of tobacco: The chemicals in tobacco smoke lead to genetic changes in cells of the penis, thereby leading to cancer.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Detection and diagnosis are done using tests like a biopsy in which a small sample of tissue is removed from the penis and tested for abnormalities due to cancer.
Chances of Survival
Treatment of penile cancer depends on what stage it is detected at and so is prognosis. The location and size of tumour, and whether cancer has just been diagnosed or has recurred also affect prognosis.
For stage I and II penile cancer or cancer that is limited only to the penis, the five-year survival rate is 85%.
The survival rate dips substantially if cancer is diagnosed after it has spread to surrounding tissues or lymph nodes in stage III or IV. The five-year survival rate is just about 59%.
In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
What are the symptoms of brain cancer and is its treatment is available in modern world technologies?
Mere body me lipoma hai kya woh cancer ho Sakta hai. Par won pain less hai. CT scan karane se pata chalega.
Noticed an unusual lump in the breast while in the shower? Then, the first thought you get might be cancer. But no need to hit the panic button though, as not all such lumps are cancerous. However, opting for immediate medical evaluation is necessary whenever one notices the presence of swelling or lumps in the breasts is found.
What are breast lumps?
The term breast lumps refer to localized swelling or bumps or bulges in the breast, which doesn’t feel as same as the breast tissues around them or like that of the normal breasts. There are a number of reasons that can cause breast lumps.
Who can develop breast lumps?
It is often the hormonal changes such as menstruation that is responsible for causing breast lumps, which usually disappears naturally in most cases. Both the boys and the girls may develop breast lumps that feel tender during their puberty. Such breast lumps are temporary and go within a few months. Increased levels of estrogen can also cause breast lumps in a baby, but that too disappears once the estrogen returns to normalcy.
But when breast lumps don’t go away even after puberty or after menstruation and continue to grow bigger, making the breasts appear bruised, turning the skin of the breast area like an orange peel or causing bloody discharge from the nipple, it’s time to visit a doctor immediately. Upon evaluation, a mastectomy might be advised.
What is mastectomy?
The term mastectomy refers to the surgical procedure of breast removal. There are five different types of mastectomy which are, total mastectomy, preventive mastectomy, partial mastectomy, the radical mastectomy and modified radical mastectomy. Depending on a person's age, size of the tumor, general health, tumor stage and grade, involvement of the lymph nodes etc., which type of mastectomy will be ideal is determined.
When mastectomy becomes necessary?
In situations where large lumps formed in the breasts, or the lumps being present in the middle of the breast or cancer has spread in more than one single area in the breasts, mastectomy becomes necessary. Plus, those, who already have gone through radiotherapy for their breast cancer are usually suggested to opt for mastectomy.
Remember, though popular and most effective, mastectomy is not the only way of dealing with breast lumps. Depending on the size, location, spreading and the type of lump, whether it's a tumor or spreading as cancer, the treatment may vary from person to person. Hence, it's a doctor who can best guide you by performing necessary medical evaluation and tests and help opt for a treatment option that is ideal. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!