We have seen some rather delectable moustaches so far this month!



image: www.freeimages.co.uk

A number of people have been growing their facial hair or doing other activities to support ‘Movember’ this month, in a bid to help raise awareness and funds for men’s health issues. Particular focus is often placed on prostate and testicular cancer, as well as mental health issues. Bowel health is another area men often find difficult to talk about with healthcare professionals.

Research suggests that men are less likely than women to seek help for health issues. Gender-specific studies suggest this may be a result of ‘traditional masculine behaviours’. This type of behaviour can result in long-term health issues and even potentially increase the risk of mortality. A lot of conditions, if found early enough, can be treatable.

Statistics from the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) show that prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men in the UK, closely followed by colorectal cancer. http://www.wcrf-uk.org/

Symptoms of prostate cancer (taken from the cancerresearchuk.org website):

As men get older their prostate gland often enlarges. This is usually not due to cancer. It is a condition called benign prostatic hyperplasia.

The symptoms of growths in the prostate are similar whether they are non-cancerous (benign) or cancerous (malignant). The symptoms include

  • Having to rush to the toilet to pass urine
  • Difficulty passing urine
  • Passing urine more often than usual, especially at night
  • Pain when passing urine
  • Blood in the urine or semen

The last two symptoms – pain and bleeding – are very rare in prostate cancer. They are more often a symptom of non-cancerous prostate conditions.

Other symptoms of prostate cancer:

Cancer of the prostate gland often grows slowly, especially in older men. Symptoms may be mild and occur over many years. Sometimes the first symptoms are from prostate cancer cells which have spread to your bones but this is not common. Cancer cells in the bone may cause pain in your

  • Back
  • Hips
  • Pelvis
  • Other bony areas

Cancer that has spread to other areas of the body is called metastatic or secondary prostate cancer.

Other symptoms that may occur are weight loss, particularly in elderly men, and difficulty getting an erection (where you haven’t had difficulty before).

For further information visit: http://www.cancerresearchuk.org/cancer-help/type/prostate-cancer/about/prostate-cancer-symptoms

Symptoms of bowl cancer (taken from nhs.uk):

Early bowel cancer may have no symptoms and some symptoms of later bowel cancer can also occur in people with less serious medical problems, such as haemorrhoids (piles).

See your doctor if you notice any of the symptoms below.

The initial symptoms of bowel cancer include:

  • blood in your stools (faeces) or bleeding from your rectum
  • a change to your normal bowel habits that persists for more than three weeks, such as diarrhoeaconstipation or passing stools more frequently than usual
  • abdominal pain
  • unexplained weight loss

As bowel cancer progresses, it can sometimes cause bleeding inside the bowel. Eventually, this can lead to your body not having enough red blood cells. This is known as anaemia.

Symptoms of anaemia include:

  • fatigue
  • breathlessness

In some cases, bowel cancer can cause an obstruction in the bowel. Symptoms of a bowel obstruction include:

  • a feeling of bloating, usually around the belly button
  • abdominal pain
  • constipation
  • vomiting

For further information visit:  http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Cancer-of-the-colon-rectum-or-bowel/Pages/Symptoms.aspx

We hope you take part in this invaluable public health awareness campaign in some way, weather it is raising money or having an open conversation with a male in your life about these issues discussed.