Hearing your partner say they have a serious disease like prostate cancer, which disproportionately affects Black men, can be devasting. You’re challenged with wanting to be strong for him, but also dealing with your own emotions.
Although it can be challenging and take a toll on both you and your partner, it is important to note that most people who develop prostate cancer do not die from it, according to the American Cancer Society.
Here are four things you should know if your partner was diagnosed with prostate cancer.
Prostate cancer treatment can vary.
Your doctor will help your partner choose the best treatment based on the type and stage of cancer they have, their age, and other health conditions they may have.
Treatment options include:
- Watchful waiting (your partner is monitored by a doctor to see if the cancer progresses)
- Surgery to remove the prostate
- Radiation therapy
- Cryotherapy (cold temperatures to kill prostate cancer cells)
- A vaccine to help boost immune cells that can fight off prostate cancer cells
Your partner will also work closely with an oncologist.
As with any cancer treatment, there are side effects.
Depending on the type of prostate cancer treatment your partner is undergoing, he may experience a range of side effects, the American Cancer Society notes.
- Erectile problems
- Bowel issues
- Swelling of the prostate area
It could impact your partner’s fertility.
Are you and your partner looking to expand your family? This is a good time to talk to your partner’s doctor about options to preserve fertility, SELF notes.
During prostate surgery, the prostate and seminal vesicle, which helps sperm navigate the ejaculatory duct, are