More Men Surviving Prostate Cancer - 8 News NOW

More Men Surviving Prostate Cancer

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LAS VEGAS -- More than 200,000 cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed this year, but the majority of those men will live to have healthy lives. Doctors say those successes come from early detection and waiting before going under the knife.

At 44 years old, Tony Crispino was given the news he says changed his life forever.

"You really hear the words you have cancer but you really don't comprehend what it means to you," Crispino said. "The natural response is that you are dying."

Crispino had been diagnosed with a high-risk form of prostate cancer and had no idea what his next step would be. It's a reality one in six men will face in their life. Modern day medicine is now proving, a prostate cancer diagnosis doesn't have to be fatal.

"Since my first experience with prostate cancer in the late 70s, the world has completely changed," said Dr. Nicholas Vogelzang, an oncologist.

Vogelzang is a renowned oncologist and researcher. He says a PSA test has changed the way doctors detect the disease. The test measures naturally occurring PSA in a man's body and can detect low-risk, intermediate-risk or high-risk prostate cancer.

"The problem is so many men and so many doctors, even if they find a relatively indolent, low-grade cancer, they panic. They say, 'Oh my God, I have cancer and I have to have it taken out, I have to have radiation,' and that's what we call overtreatment," he said.

Vogelzang says the majority of prostate cancers can be treated with a pill or can simply be monitored and may never cause a problem. Only 20 percent are fast growing and require surgery, radiation and hormone treatment.

Several years after Crispino underwent treatment, he is cancer free. He now heads the prostate support group Us Too and helps answer men's biggest concerns about their diagnosis.

In 2012, the risk of overtreatment prompted the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force to recommended men not use the PSA test.

There will be a prostate cancer awareness 5K charity run on Saturday, Sept. 28 at UNLV's Track and Field Stadium. The race is called "This one's for the boy's" and starts at 9 a.m.

 If you'd like more information about support groups or the third annual "this one's for the boy's" 5-k charity run...head to 8 news now dot com.

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