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Different stages of Prostate Cancer

After prostate cancer has been diagnosed, tests are done to find out if cancer cells have spread within the prostate or to other parts of the body. Prostate cancer grows locally within the prostate, often for many years. Eventually, prostate cancer extends outside the prostate. Prostate cancer can spread beyond the prostate in three ways:

– By growing into neighboring tissues (invasion).
– By spreading through the lymph system of lymph nodes and lymph vessels.
– By traveling to distant tissues through the blood (metastasis).

The TNM System for Prostate Cancer Stages

The prostate cancer stages are described using three different aspects of tumor growth and spread. It’s called the TNM system for tumor, nodes, and metastasis.
T : for tumor – describes the size of the main area of prostate cancer.
N : for nodes – describes whether prostate cancer has spread to any lymph nodes and to what extent.
M : for metastasis – means distant spread of prostate cancer, for example, to the bones or liver.

Prostate Cancer Stage I

In stage I, prostate cancer is found in the prostate only. Stage I prostate cancer is microscopic; it can’t be felt on a digital rectal exam (DRE), and it isn’t seen on imaging of the prostate.

Prostate Cancer Stage II

The cancer is more advanced than in stage I, but has not spread outside the prostate. The Gleason score can range from 2-10. Stage II prostate cancer may also be called stage A2, stage B1, or stage B2 prostate cancer.

Prostate Cancer Stage III

Stage III prostate cancer has spread outside the prostate, but only barely. Prostate cancer in stage III may involve nearby tissues, like the seminal vesicles.

Prostate Cancer Stage IV

cancer has metastasized (spread) to lymph nodes near or far from the prostate or to other parts of the body, such as the bladder, rectum, bones, liver, or lungs. Metastatic prostate cancer often spreads to the bones. The Gleason score can range from 2-10. Stage IV prostate cancer may also be called stage D1 or stage D2 prostate cancer.

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