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There are no obvious signs or symptoms of prostate cancer in its beginning stages. Many early stage prostate cancers are detected only through a digital rectal exam and PSA testing .

When the tumor becomes larger, symptoms may appear. They may include:

  • Frequent urination, including the need to get up often during the night to urinate
  • Hesitancy in starting the flow of urine or inability to urinate (urinary retention)
  • Loss of force of the stream of urine
  • Pain or discomfort while urinating
  • Impotence
  • Pain with ejaculation
  • Blood in the urine or semen
  • Back pain or bone pain that is new and unexplained by recent injury or increased activity
  • Incontinence of bowel or bladder contents

These symptoms can also be caused by other, less serious conditions and do not necessarily mean that you have prostate cancer. It is important, however, to see your doctor if you are having any of these symptoms.

Revision Information

  • Detailed guide: prostate cancer. American Cancer Society website. Available at: http://www.cancer.org/ . Accessed October 9, 2008.

  • Prostate cancer. National Cancer Institute website. Available at: http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/types/prostate . Accessed October 9, 2008.