Cancer is a hidden killer and it is one of the leading causes of death that there is right now. For guys, one of the most deadly cancers is also one of the most rare that these is right now. According to the American Cancer Society, less than 1% of the cancers that are diagnosed in North America and Europe are penile cancer. In Asia, Africa, and South America, however, it accounts for up to 10% of the total cancers that are diagnosed in men.
Penile Cancer Statistics
1. About 320 men in the United States are estimated to die of penile cancer annually.
2. Only 1,640 new cases of penile cancer are typically diagnosed in the US every year.
3. The 5 year survival rate for men diagnosed with penile cancer is 85% if it has not spread to other areas of the body.
4. If the cancer has spread to other parts of the body, then the 5 year survival rate drops down to 11%.
5. In North America, those with a Hispanic background in their family, regardless of their identifying race, have a greater chance of developing penile cancer that is HPV related than any other demographic.
6. Most cases of penile cancer occur in men over the age of 60. It rarely affects men who are under the age of 40.
7. When penile cancer is caught in its earliest stage, the 5 year survival rate exceeds 90%.
8. Men who are circumcised have a lower risk of catching an HPV related case of penile cancer when compared to uncircumcised men.
9. Research indicates that one case of penile cancer is saved for every 909 circumcisions that take place.
10. Although the cancer is rather rare, there has been a 20% increase in the incidents of penile cancer over the last three decades.
11. Most of the increase in penile cancer rates in the Western/Industrialized World has happened since the year 2000.
12. The 10-year prevalence of penile cancer is estimated to stand at 7.6 per 100,000 men.
13. Smoking is a known risk factor that increases the chance of penile cancer forming for men in any age or racial demographic.
14. More than 80% of men in the US are circumcised and for every 1 who gets cancer, there will be 1,437 men in the US who do not.
15. In comparison, fewer than 1% of Danish men are circumcised and the risks of developing penile cancer are even lower in this population group.
16. 61% of penile cancers are diagnosed at the localized stage, before the cancer is able to reach the lymph nodes.
17. In the US, penile cancer in a man who was circumcised as an infant is so rare that case studies are written to document the case.
18. The lifetime risk of penile cancer in the total population of circumcised men is only 1 in 50,000 to 1 in 12,000,000.
19. There were 50,000 cases of penile cancer in the USA from 1930 to 1990 and these resulted in 10,000 deaths.
By knowing these statistics and understanding what the physical symptoms of penile cancer are, guys can get the treatment they need when it has a better chance of being cured.
Penile Cancer Defined
So what is penile cancer? In looking at the penile tissues, there are actually several different types of cells that make up the spongey tissues that are controlled by chambers that fill up with blood. Penile cancer can actually develop in each kind of cell, so it is important to recognize early what type of cancer is occurring so that penile cancer can be appropriately treated. Far and away, at 95% of diagnosed penile cancers, is Squamous cell carcinoma [SCC].
The danger of SCC is that it can develop anywhere on the penis, but it is most commonly found on the foreskin of men who have not been circumcised. It can also be found on the glans and it takes a tumor form. The tumors typically grow slowly, so if they are caught early, the cancer can be cured. Other forms of penile cancer may include melanoma, basal cell cancer, sarcoma in the blood vessels, muscles, and connective tissues, or even in the sweat glands.
By recognizing the symptoms of penile cancer earlier rather than later, guys will have a fighting chance for a long-term survival. It is also important to keep these penile cancer statistics in mind so that a complete picture of the disease can be discovered.
Symptoms and Additional Facts
What are the symptoms of penile cancer? Whenever there is bleeding from the penis or a smelly discharge, a doctor should give it a look to see what is going on. This cancer can also cause a color change to occur on the tissues of the penis. A rash may also form. Anything that looks unusual and doesn’t go away after 2-3 days should probably be looked at by a doctor as well. For guys that have their foreskin intact, if it becomes difficult to pull the skin back over the penis, then this could be an indicator of cancer being present.
For guys, another barrier that must be removed is a willingness to talk about the issue. It can be embarrassing to discuss what is going on down there with a stranger. Many guys don’t like going to the doctor as it is, so they’ll wait until the very last second to seek treatment and by then, it could be too late. If any of the above symptoms are present, then guys – go get the help you need right away. Your life depends on it!
One of the scariest things to find on the penis is a lump. Here’s some good news: a lump doesn’t mean that cancer is there. A number of benign issues can cause a penis to develop lumps or malformations. Any lump, however, should be looked at by a doctor just to make sure that there isn’t something cancerous trying to form down there.