Sexual Function After Prostate Cancer
- Former rugby star Kenny Logan was diagnosed with prostate cancer last year, and after surgery for treatment, he is cancer-free.
- Logan says his sex life has changed after cancer treatment, but that the doctor says things should go back to normal in under two years’ time.
- It’s typical for your sexuality to undergo changes due to cancer treatment.
- PSA tests are the screening method used to screen for prostate cancer. These tests look for PSA in the bloodstream, which could indicate the presence of prostate cancer.
- People with a family history of prostate cancer – or other cancers – should begin screening for prostate cancer earlier than the average person. The current recommendation is to begin screening at age 50 if you have an average risk of prostate cancer.
- Logan opted for surgery to treat his prostate cancer. Other prostate cancer treatments include hormone therapy, radiation, and chemotherapy.
Logan is married to TV presenter Gabby Logan, and the pair continue to speak openly about his disease, raising awareness about prostate cancer in the process.Read More
Prostate Cancer Treatment Decisions
Logan opted for surgery to treat his prostate cancer. Other prostate cancer treatments include hormone therapy, radiation, and chemotherapy.
Doctors interviewed by SurvivorNet said they have a hopeful outlook regarding prostate cancer diagnosis due to the fact that there are many different treatment options. Additionally, there has been significant progress over the past decade for treatment options.
For instance, surgery and radiation treatment options have made improvements in reducing the treatment side effects experienced by patients, while still providing high cure rates. Even for me whose prostate cancer is diagnosed at an advanced stage of the disease, many new treatment options exist to treat the cancer while also maintaining a high quality of life.
The Debate About When to Have Prostate Surgery
Sex Function After Cancer & Logan’s Outlook
Sex after cancer – particularly cancers that affect sexual or sexually-related organs, like the breast, ovaries, prostate, or testes – is typically different, for a period of time. Logan is speaking openly about that.
He says that his treatment from prostate cancer left him “black and blue downstairs,” reports The Sun. Logan has had to deal with some incidences of erectile dysfunction as a result of his treatment.
Logan spoke on wife Gabby’s podcast, The MidPoint, during which he revealed, “Six months on, I would say I’m physically 100 per cent, mentally 100 per cent, feel good.” He continued to say, “From a sexual point of view, it’s not consistent. As the surgeon said to me, this could take 18 months.”
Will Sex Be Different After Cancer?
Having a clear time frame for when things might return to a normal function may be helpful for many survivors.
Logan continues, “Within a month, I was getting movement…it’s just not as consistent.” Logan’s openness around his prostate cancer diagnosis, treatment, and post-treatment experiences led to messages from other men who related to his journey.
The former athlete says, “If I can help one person, that’d be great.”
Nicole Theodore, a cervical cancer survivor, affirms that sex after cancer is different. In an earlier interview with SurvivorNet, she says, “Sex after gynecological cancer: it is a journey.”
SN & You Discussing Sex and Sexuality After Cancer
Theodore continues, “Obviously sex is really important in a relationship and it’s different for everyone — but I think you just really need to talk to each other.”
The survivor says that although things may look different, they are still fulfilling. “If you’ve just been diagnosed and you are thinking you’re never going to have sex again, think again,” she tells SurvivorNet.
“You’re going to have amazing sex all the time — and you get to explore your body in a whole new way.”
Screening for Prostate Cancer & Prostate Cancer Risk Factors
Screening for prostate cancer is done via prostate-specific antigen (PSA) tests. In the U.S., most cases of prostate cancer are caught with PSA tests.
The guidelines for PSA tests depend upon risk factor. For instance, if you have a family history of prostate cancer, you should screen at an earlier age for this disease. Prostate cancer disproportionately affects Black men; if you are Black, you should screen earlier for the disease.
When assessing your prostate cancer risk, you should consider the following factors:
- Men under the age of 40 are less likely to get prostate cancer. But after the age of 50, your risk factor increases dramatically. Approximately six of ten cases of prostate cancer are found in men older than 65.
- Prostate cancer develops more often in Black men and men of African ancestry. It also tends to develop at an earlier age in Black men.
- Most prostate cancer incidences occur in men who have no family history of the disease.
- Having a family member who was diagnosed with prostate cancer more than doubles a man’s risk of developing the disease.
- Genetics can play a part in determining if you have a higher risk of prostate cancer.
- Screening for prostate cancer can be life-saving and it’s advisable to get screened, particularly if you have a higher risk of the disease.
PSA tests look for PSA in the bloodstream, which can indicate prostate cancer. After that, there will be a biopsy to determine if it is cancer and what the stage of the cancer is.
When Should I Get Tested for Prostate Cancer?
Learn more about SurvivorNet's rigorous medical review process.