Prostate cancer is one of the most common cancers in older men. If detected in a early stage usually isn’t life-threatening. However, in 2011, 240,890 men were diagnosed with prostate cancer, according to the American Cancer Society, and 33,720 men died of it.
A large percentage of older men will be eventually affected by this disease. Warren Buffett, the billionaire investor, announced Tuesday that he has been diagnosed with cancer.
In a letter to shareholders, Buffett, 81, said that he had been diagnosed with stage I prostate cancer.
“The good news is that I’ve been told by my doctors that my condition is not remotely life-threatening or even debilitating in any meaningful way,” Buffett said in the letter.
Is there way to prevent prostate cancer?
Unfortunately there’s no know way to protect men, but it seems that Vitamin D may play an important role in decreasing the risks.
In a new study, men with the highest levels of vitamin D in their blood were 57 percent less likely than men with the lowest levels to succumb to prostate cancer.
However, no link was found between vitamin D levels and having prostate cancer, the researchers said.
“Prostate cancer is a very heterogeneous disease,” said study researcher Irene Shui, an epidemiologist at the Harvard School of Public Health. Some tumors progress quickly, spreading to other sites in the body and causing death, while others stay within the prostate for years and never affect a man’s health or life.
It remains unclear exactly why vitamin D would lower men’s risk of dying from prostate cancer if it has no influence at all on the risk of developing the cancer, Shui said. It may be that vitamin D specifically influences the cancer cells’ abilities to progress to later stages of the disease and spread through the body, but not the actual initiation of the cancer, she said.
We can only hope that this and other researches can find an effective way to prevent and treat this disease.
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