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Listen Up, Men! Cancer Can Affect You At Any Age

June 19, 2019

Did you know one in three men will develop some type of cancer in his lifetime? This National Men’s Health Month, Texas Oncology’s Dr. Carl Chakmakjian, who sees patients in Waco, Gatesville, and Mexia, is sharing important facts that men at any age should keep in mind.

What are some common misconceptions about men and cancer?

Age is a top misconception, as cancer can affect men at any point in time. There is also a large perception among men that women are more likely to get cancer because of the public awareness and frequency of breast cancer. That’s not the case.

Although prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in men, what are some others that are prevalent? How have treatment options evolved throughout your career?

Colon cancer is definitely on the rise. We’re also seeing a lot of men with skin cancers secondary to sun exposure.

Luckily, treatment options have evolved surgically with minimally invasive and robotic surgery, as well as in medical oncology. The advancement of immunotherapy has revolutionized the care of melanoma, for example, and we’re currently enrolling patients in an innovative prostate cancer clinical trial. Radiation technology also continues to improve regularly.

What steps can men at any age can take to reduce their cancer risk?

Men are notorious for not going to see the doctor. I think the most important thing is to keep regular scheduled follow-up with an primary physician, so that appropriate cancer screening is being performed as recommended. 

What should all men know and take into consideration this National Men’s Health Month?

National Men's Health Month is an important time for men to step back, evaluate their overall health status, and ask a themselves, “Am I seeing a physician at least once a year?,” “Am I keeping up with recommended screening exams?,” “Am I eating healthy?,” “Am I taking time to exercise?”

For upcoming webinars visit www.TexasOncologyFoundation.org.