Today we are talking to the gentlemen of #TeamZenzsual and to the friends who have experienced prostate cancer with their partners or relatives, because at times when our health is compromised it is important to have the information and support necessary to recover the health and together come out stronger from each experience.
Let's start by explaining that the prostate is a small walnut-shaped structure that is part of the male reproductive system. This organ surrounds the urethra, the tube that carries urine out of the body. Prostate cancer refers to disease that begins in the prostate gland, a common cause of cancer death in men over the age of 75 and rarely found in men under the age of 40.
symptoms of prostate cancer
In its initial stage there are often no symptoms. However, once prostate cancer begins to develop, the following symptoms may occur:
- Delay or slowness to start urination
- Dribbling or leaking urine, most often after urination
- slow urinary flow
- Straining when urinating or not being able to empty all the urine from the bladder
- Blood in urine or semen
- And when the cancer spreads to other parts of the body, there may be bone pain or tenderness, most often in the lower back and pelvic bones.
Keep in mind that these symptoms resemble those caused by other prostate problems , such as an enlarged prostate, which is why it is important that the men of #TeamZenzsual regularly see the urologist, just as we go to the gynecologist.
How to detect Prostate Cancer?
In the absence of symptoms in its early stage, doctors recommend performing a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test, since the PSA level rises before there are any symptoms and gives clues to the patient. doctor of the presence of the disease. This test is recommended to be performed at least once a year, after approximately 40 years of age or earlier if you have a history of cancer in your family.
Additionally, during the medical appointment the urologist will perform a physical study in the office that includes:
- Performing a digital rectal examination , which may be giving signs to detect prostate cancer.
- And if you determine any abnormality during the rectal examination or if you detect high PSA levels in the blood test, you can perform a biopsy , taking a sample of prostate tissue, which is then sent to a laboratory for analysis.
- Treatment depends on many factors and individual conditions, but if the cancer has not spread outside the prostate gland, common treatments include: hormone therapy , radiation therapy , and even surgery to remove the prostate and something else. surrounding tissue (called a radical prostatectomy ).
Sexuality and Prostate Cancer
- How does Radiotherapy affect you ? When a man receives radiation therapy, it is possible that as the treated area heals, the blood vessels lose their ability to stretch due to the scarring process in and around the vessels. For that reason, they can no longer dilate enough to allow the blood to speed up creating a firm erection. Radiation can also speed up hardening (arteriosclerosis), narrowing, or even blockage of the arteries in the pelvic region.
- Consequences of surgery: Surgery to treat prostate cancer can cause some type of injury or removal of the nerves that help cause an erection, which is why men who undergo this type of surgery may have difficulty achieve an erection ( erectile dysfunction ) or stop having an erection.
When the size and location of a tumor allow surgery to be performed without affecting the nerves, a greater number of men recover erectile capacity than with other techniques. The hope in these cases is that there are several different treatments to recover them up to two years later, which you should consult with your doctor.
- Peyronie's disease is the condition that some men develop after surgery to remove the prostate (prostatectomy), in which the penis can develop a painful curve or "knot" when having an erection, due to scar tissue that forms inside of the penis. However, you can undergo treatment with injected drugs or surgery.
Hormone therapy and its effects on erections:
Men receiving androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) for prostate cancer are at high risk for sexual problems , including loss of sexual desire and erectile dysfunction. Erections may or may not recover when ADT is stopped. ED drugs usually don't work in these cases because they don't help with loss of sexual desire.
What can I do to regain sexuality?
It's time to adjust to your new sexual routine when you experience changes in your body due to cancer. It will be different, but not impossible. The important thing is to let yourself be carried away by the connection that unites you and discover new ways to feel good when it comes to sexuality.
- Clear all your doubts with the doctor: the first step is to ask about cancer and its effects on your sexual life. Find out as much as you can. When you know what to expect, you can plan how you might handle such situations. Ask him if he can prescribe some medications to relieve the symptoms and restore your sexual functions.
- Speak clearly with your partner. Tell him what the doctor told you about the new stage that you will live. Talk openly about the risks, lack of desire, and difficulty getting an erection. Express to her what you would like to experience to revive sexuality and offer other options for her to reach orgasm.
- Discover new ways to feel pleasure. It is the opportunity to learn new ways to give and receive sexual pleasure. It is important that both of you understand that sexuality does not always involve penile-vaginal intercourse and that penetration is not the only way to achieve satisfaction. Use your hands to give and receive more stimulation, and consider including sex toys in your routine.
- Think more about your sexuality: for men it has never been a problem to think about sex. Then take the opportunity to reconnect with your erotic thoughts. Try reading erotic literature , watch sensual movies or think more about those moments of pleasure from the past that make you relive desire.
- Take advantage of the sense of touch: touching yourself sensually and/or sexually with your partner is something you can always do, since your ability to feel pleasure through touch always remains. For example, try self-examination of your erogenous zones , such as your thighs, your neck, your nipples, your back and around your genitals, until you reach your penis to promote an erection, and if it is not possible, you should not stress, rather surrender to feel more in other areas of your body. Always using a quality intimate gel with high concentrations of hyaluronic acid such as #Zenzsual, which helps you hydrate weakened tissue and avoid painful irritations.
- Penile Rehabilitation: The doctor may sometimes refer the patient who is recovering from surgery to treat prostate cancer, to penile rehabilitation or erectile rehabilitation, which consists of 2 parts. The first is when you are already having erections that are hard enough for penetration and your doctor recommends that you should ideally be able to get an erection two to three times a week to help keep the tissues in the penis healthy. And the second phase is to ask the doctor if you can use a low-dose pill to promote blood flow around the nerves and help the nerves heal.
Strengthen your self-esteem. Remember your virtues. You are much more than an erection. Remember that a woman's main sexual organ is her brain and with your words, your hands, your skills and your intelligence you can achieve much more. Also, keep in mind that there are a thousand ways to stimulate the clitoris and the female body, which you will discover with a lot of communication and practice. Worry about eating well and doing the physical and mental exercise that you are allowed to stay strong and with energy to strengthen that connection that made you fall in love and that will be a key factor in your recovery process.
- Consult the psycho-oncologist . Seek professional help if you feel anxious, depressed, worried, or just having a hard time. At #TuSaludIntima we offer SexCoaching sessions where we can guide you on the path to recovering your sexuality after cancer, thanks to the team of specialists who will address your case comprehensively, with whom you can discuss your concerns about sexuality at this stage. of life and receive some effective advice.
cheers up! With a positive attitude, the adequate support of your loved ones, your partner and professional attention, you will be able to rediscover your sexuality, overcoming prostate cancer.
For our part, we will continue to share all the resources that are useful to take care of your sexuality and your life as a couple in difficult times.
In our online store : TuSaludIntima.com you can also purchase the #Zenzsual intimate gel, to use daily during your intimacy sessions alone or with your partner, during and after treatment.
We also invite you every week to read more articles like this on our blog , where we always share health and sexuality tips for your well-being. Follow us on our social networks @tusaludintima @doctoraklarasenior and @tu_ginecologa and share with us the comments, doubts or concerns that you want to address in this way.