What Causes Prostate Cancer?

There is no definite answer to this question. Some research suggests a gene may cause prostate cancer to develop in some men. Other research has linked prostate cancer to levels of certain blood proteins. The risk factors that increase a man's chances of being diagnosed with prostate cancer include:


This is the main risk factor. Men under age 45 are rarely diagnosed with prostate cancer. The older a man gets, the greater his risk for developing prostate cancer. Most men diagnosed with prostate cancer are usually over 65.

Family History

Prostate-cancer risk is greater for men whose father or brother have been diagnosed with the disease.


African-American men are more likely than white or Hispanic men to develop prostate cancer. Men who are Asian, Pacific Islander(s), American Indian or Alaska Native are less likely to develop prostate cancer.

Diet and Exercise

A high-fat diet, obesity and lack of regular exercise may increase the risk of developing prostate cancer.

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Screening and Diagnosis