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Prostate Cancer

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Prostate cancer is a disease in which cancer develops in the prostate, a gland in the male reproductive system. 

It occurs when cells of the prostate mutate and begin to multiply out of control. These cells may spread (metastasize) from the prostate to other parts of the body, especially the bones and lymph nodes. 

Marshfield Clinic has specially trained experts in the diagnosis and treatment of prostate cancer.


Marshfield Clinic provides a number of treatment options for prostate cancer to ensure the best chance of curing the disease. Specific examples include:

Radiation Therapy

Radiation therapy uses special forms of delivering radiation to fight the cancer:

  • Brachytherapy - Radioactive "seeds" are implanted into the prostate to offer an effective treatment option for men with early stage prostate cancer that is less disruptive to their lives than standard radiation treatment.
  • External-Beam Radiation - this form of radiation therapy delivers radiation from outside the body.
  • IMRT - Intensity Modulation Radiation Therapy (IMRT). This allows the radiation oncology team to:
    • Customize a patient's treatment to the size, shape and location of the tumor.
    • Minimize the amount of healthy tissue that is exposed to radiation.
    • Treat tumors previously considered untreatable.
  • Other forms of IMRT can be used for many tumors including those that are hard-to-reach. Other forms/names of IMRT are Tomotherapy®, 3D conformal radiotherapy and image guided radiation therapy.


  • Laparoscopic Radical Prostatectomy - urological surgeons are able to remove a cancerous prostate gland with a few small abdominal incisions instead of one large incision which promises a quicker recovery, less pain and a shorter hospital stay.
  • Robotic Prostatectomy - using the advanced da Vinci robot, surgeons precisely remove cancerous tissue and at the same time spare nerves surrounding the prostate that control bladder and potency.

Hormone Therapy

Hormone therapy, also known as androgen-deprivation therapy or ADT, is designed to stop testosterone from being released or to prevent the hormone from acting on the prostate cells. 

Removal or blockage of the hormone may stop or slow the growth of prostate cancer.


Chemotherapy​​ uses drugs to kill cancer cells. Chemotherapy drugs interfere with the growth of cancer cells, eventually causing the cells to die. 

Chemotherapy treatment is used to shrink the tumor, keep the tumor from spreading, and kill cancer cells that have spread to other areas of the body or relieve symptoms related to cancer.

  • Biologic therapy: also called immunotherapy, is a form of cancer treatment that uses the body's immune system to fight cancer. It is generally used together with other cancer treatments to improve treatment effectiveness or to decrease side effects.
  • Monoclonal antibodies: Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-made drugs that find and attach to specific places (proteins) on the surface of cancer cells. 
    When they attach, they stop the protein from doing its job, such as making cancer cells grow. Monoclonal antibodies can be used alone or in combination with other therapies.​​
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 Prostate Cancer Video

Test Your Knowledge of Cancer's Warning Signs

Early detection of cancer is important because it is usually easier to treat—and possibly cure—when caught early. Do you know what signs to look for? Take this quiz to find out more.

1. Any sudden or progressive change in a mole's appearance could be a sign of skin cancer.
2. A new mole or a change in an existing mole may be a sign of skin cancer.
3. One sign of malignant melanoma is a mole with shades of tan, brown, black, or blue.
4. Changes, lumps, or hard masses in the testicles are signs of testicular cancer.
5. A change in bowel habits—blood in the stool or chronic constipation—is a common symptom of stomach cancer.
6. Lumps, hard knots, or a thickening in the breast could mean breast cancer.
7. A nagging cough or hoarseness could be signs of lung cancer.
8. Prostate cancer often has no symptoms in its early stages.
9. Symptoms of mouth or tongue cancer include a sore inside the mouth that doesn't heal and mouth pain that doesn't get better or go away.
10. Bladder cancer has no symptoms.