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Prostate Cancer Can Become a Disabling Condition

by Editorial Board on June 19, 2014 · 0 comments

in Malignant Cancer

Prostate cancer is one of the most commonly seen malignant cancers in men. More than 189,000 cases are reported annually in the U.S. alone and it is recognized as the second leading cause of cancer death in American people. In the year 2005, about 230,000 new cases and 30,000 deaths due to prostate cancer were reported in the U.S.

Prostate cancer develops in the prostate gland of the male reproductive system and if it turns malignant, the cancer cells can invade other body parts including bones and lymph nodes. It often causes difficulty in urination, sexual intercourse, and can lead to erectile dysfunction in affected men.

Other symptoms include painful urination, increased urination at night, blood in urine, difficulty in maintaining a steady stream of urine and a pain in the back, hips, or pelvis that doesn’t go away. In advanced cases, prostate cancer may invade other body parts and symptoms related to body parts invaded may also be seen in these patients. Bones are the common target of prostate cancer cells invasion.

What causes prostate cancer remains elusive, we don’t exactly know. However, age remains the major risk factor related to this cancer. It is uncommon under the age of 50 but becomes much more common in patients over 60.

There are various tests available for the diagnosis of prostate cancer but confirmation is usually done through tissue biopsy. A small piece of prostate tissue is removed for microscopic examination to confirm the presence of cancer cells. After the diagnosis is confirmed, staging of prostate cancer is usually performed to check if cancer cells have spread within the prostate or to other parts of the body. There are various techniques like radionuclide bone scan, computed tomography (CT-Scan), and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan used to stage the prostate cancer. Treatment options for prostate cancer include surgery, hormonal therapy, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy and are tailored to the stage level of cancer identified.

Prostate cancer is listed in Social Security’s listing of impairments, for people who meet a listing they are found disabled so long as they are not working at substantial gainful activity (SGA) levels which is $1,000 a month in 2011.  To meet the Social Security disability listing your application will be evaluated to determine if you have confirmed prostate cancer or not and more importantly what functional limitations you have due to this disease. The factors that make you disabled or not are mostly related to how the prostate cancer is affecting and limiting your ability to work.  Prostate cancer patients with metastasis or advanced prostate cancer have a higher chance of meeting a listing, or winning Social Security disability benefits under other rules that recognize such a person could not do sustained full time work.

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