Prostate Cancer: A Danger For Men

California governor Jerry Brown and acting legend Sir Ian McKellen have recently disclosed their problems with prostate cancer. When was the last time you were screened?

Recently, Ian McKellen publicly disclosed that he was diagnosed with prostate cancer years ago, and has been carefully monitoring the disease since, lest it become dangerous.

Doctors diagnosed Sir Ian McKellen with early-stage prostate cancer “six or seven years ago,” but he has undergone no invasive treatment, the English actor wrote today on his website.

Just today, doctors announced that California governor Jerry Brown’s treatment for prostate cancer is going quite well, and his prognosis is excellent.

“Fortunately, this is early-stage localized prostate cancer, which is being treated with a short course of conventional radiotherapy,” said oncologist Dr. Eric Small of the University of California, San Francisco, according to a statement from Brown’s office.

Did you catch what’s similar about both those cases? Well, apart from being about very smart and talented white guys in their 70s? Both men have excellent medical prognoses because they have early-stage prostate cancer. That means the disease was discovered early, and can be treated and contained relatively easily. In far, far too many cases, the disease is not discovered until it’s quite advanced, at which point treatment is invasive, disabling, dangerous, and too often futile.

If you or someone you know has a prostate, get it checked. The chances of cancer rise substantially as a patient ages, but in some cases it can strike surprisingly young. We can enjoy the fine work of Sir Ian and Governor Brown for a long time to come, because they got themselves checked out properly. Take the hint.



About Noah Brand

Noah Brand is a writer and editor, and quite possibly also a cartoon character from the 1930s. His life, when it is written, will read better than it lived. He is usually found in Portland, Oregon, directly underneath a very nice hat.


  1. Oh – How interesting. Men and A Health Issue. They are rarer than Flying Pigs!

    Any Idea what the symptoms are for Prostate Cancer – especially for the surprisingly young?

    Prostates and men things are still in the comedy zone, a bit like Prison Rape and Don’t Drop The Soap. Any idea of any none comedy based info of what prostates are, where they are, what to look out for and especially what young guys should be watchful for, especially the surprisingly young.

    There is a very middle class and privileged attitude to men and Prostates ….. along with people having annual medical exams and assuming the position – generally from age 50 up and with a bank balance that allows it!

    I know it’s hard for some Middle Aged, Financially Solvent, Middle Class types to grasp – but Prostate Cancer really is Equal Opportunity Territory, and guys with poor quality, low cost and even budget net access may appreciate a few tips. I keep wondering at the Racial Profiling around male cancer and why skin tone is such a factor in both diagnosis, treatment, Prognosis and also age of death.

    Is that to do with how radiation gets thorough the skin or how certain drugs react to skin colour?

    It’s not just spot the celeb with a prostate and some celeb gossip – such as Sir Ian (Margaret to his friends) has been pushing a little harder when it comes to having a number 1 and his Detrusor Muscle is aching and not from laughter.

    I find it amazing that there is a Butter Ball Hotline where you can ask anything you like about stuffing a Turkey and giving thanks for Salmonella – but if you use 1 800 Prostate or 1 800 MaleCancer the silence is deafening!

    Now there is a project for someone – getting prostates on a hotline and even saving a few lives with a seasoning of equality.

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