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Your Healthy Family: Rise in prostate cancer during COVID-19 pandemic

Posted at 6:59 AM, Oct 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-07 09:31:41-04

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. — A Port Charlotte doctor said because of the pandemic, we're seeing a rise in preventable cancers in men. He wants to remind all guys: it's important to get screened.

Dr. Simon Grinshteyn with Bayfront Health said because of the COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of men didn't get screened for prostate or colon cancers.

"So we had an uptick in in the number of cases that could have been caught earlier on, but they weren’t,” he said.

He said prostate issues are the second most common problem he sees men come in with.

"It could be as simple as getting a blood test,” Dr. Grinshteyn said.

He said they track what's called a Prostate Specific Antigen in a man's blood during yearly blood tests.

"We follow them until the numbers are bad, and then we start treatment on it. We start a workup, you see a urologist, you may need a biopsy, you may need an MRI," he said.

But Dr. Grinshteyn said only 40 percent of men actually get screened for prostate cancer. He said lung cancer is the most common cancer in men and women, but after that, prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men.

"If you have a prostate, you will have a cancer eventually. That's kind of the general rule of thumb," he said.

Dr. Grinshteyn said if you're having problems with urgency or urinating in general, pain or swelling in the area, it's important to get checked, and quickly.

"It is 100 percent curable if you find it in its early form. Those are great odds, and all it takes is a yearly blood test," he said.

Dr. Grinshteyn also said treatments for prostate cancer are very manageable.