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Reduce the risk of prostate cancer

30 Oct 2019

By Dr Thabani Nkwanyana, Liberty’s medical officer

For many South African men, November just brings them closer to the end of the year and the December holidays. However, it is also the time of the year when awareness around prostate cancer increases significantly during the month of Movember.

Understanding prostate cancer means a lot more than simply growing a moustache and donating money to a charity. While this is important to help drive awareness, you need to take a careful look at your own body.

The prostate is a gland found only in men and is situated immediately below the bladder and in front of the bowel. It produces fluid that protects and enriches sperm. Cancer occurs when some of the cells in the prostate reproduces far more rapidly than normal, resulting in a malignant tumour.

If left untreated, the prostate cancer may eventually spread into other parts of the body such as the lymph nodes and bones. By this stage the cancer is more difficult to treat and chances of surviving decrease.

Top male cancer claims according to Liberty's Claim Statistics for 2019:

• 32.3% of claims in men were for Prostate Cancer

• 14.3% for Colon and Rectal

• 13.1% for Lung

• 11.1% for Skin

• 5.4% for Gastro-intestinal

How to spot the symptoms

Often there are no symptoms. This is why screening is important. But if you have any of the following you need to see a doctor immediately:

• Problem with passing urine (slow flow, hesitancy, frequency, urgency)

• Blood in the urine or semen

• Reduced ability to get an erection

• Painful ejaculation

Act against prostate cancer in your own body

If you are a man over the age of 45 you should take an active position on this disease. Make a concerted effort to have your prostate checked by a medical doctor. Getting the right screening test at the right time is one of the most important things you can do for your health.

Medical screenings help you to find diseases early, sometimes before you have symptoms. This is when diseases like cancer are easiest to treat. With early detection, prostate or testicular cancer can be nipped in the bud. While different cancers have varying survival rates, prostate cancer has a 99% survival rate after five years due to early medical intervention.

With medical advancements in cancer screening becoming more effective, cancer is being diagnosed earlier and at younger ages. Unfortunately, the cost of treatment and recovery can deplete a family's financial resources. Cancer treatment takes a toll on your body because the side effects are severe. If you can't work, you won't be able to afford the medication and costly treatments. You may no longer be able to provide and support your family.

This is why a long-term insurance solution such as Lifestyle Protector from Liberty plays such an important role in a family's financial planning. Speak to your Liberty Financial Adviser or your Broker to find out about Liberty's Lifestyle Protector's wide range of benefits including dread disease benefits that can assist with any lifestyle adjustments that may be required.

Liberty Group Limited is a Registered Insurer, the insurer of Lifestyle Protector and an Authorised Financial Services Provider (FAIS 2409). Terms and Conditions apply.

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Reduce the risk of prostate cancer

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Liberty Group Limited (Reg. no 1957/002788/06) is a registered Long Term Insurer and an Authorised Financial Services Provider (FAIS no 2409).