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Metastatic Prostate Cancer

Metastatic prostate cancer is prostate cancer that has spread (metastasized) to the lymph nodes or other parts of the body. Prostate cancer is the abnormal growth of cells in the tissues of the prostate gland. The prostate gland is a walnut-shaped organ located below a man's bladder. It produces fluid for semen.

The exact cause of prostate cancer is unknown. But things such as age and family history increase a man's risk for this disease.

Metastatic prostate cancer may not cause symptoms. It may be discovered in exams and tests that are part of follow-up care for another health condition. Symptoms may include bone pain, weight loss, or swelling in the legs and feet.

Prostate cancer usually is a disease of older men. Bone scans may be used to discover metastatic prostate cancer, which often appears in bones. Other tests that may be used to find out the extent of metastatic prostate cancer include CT scans, MRIs, and PET scans.

Treatment for metastatic prostate cancer focuses on relieving symptoms and slowing the rate at which the cancer spreads. Treatment may include hormone therapy, radiation therapy, surgery, and chemotherapy. In some cases, taking part in a clinical trial of a new treatment may be an option.

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Christopher G. Wood, MD, FACS - Urology, Oncology
Last Revised September 12, 2012

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: September 12, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.