Navigation Links
Do Bald Men Face Higher Risk of Prostate Cancer?

By Barbara Bronson Gray
HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, May 22 (HealthDay News) -- Got hair? If you don't, you might have a higher risk of prostate cancer, a preliminary study suggests.

Researchers are reporting that bald men who underwent biopsies of the prostate were more likely to have cancer than were those with more hair on their heads.

"Bald men should be aware that they may benefit from being screened earlier and perhaps, if necessary, from being biopsied sooner," said study author Dr. Neil Fleshner, a professor of surgical urology at the University of Toronto. "In the study, the more bald people were, the more likely they were to have prostate cancer. We're 95 percent sure this is real."

However, not all doctors are ready to embrace the study's conclusions.

The possible association between male pattern baldness and prostate cancer has been considered in previous studies.

Although the precise mechanism isn't understood, researchers think male hormones known as androgens may play a role in both baldness and prostate cancer. Androgens, which include testosterone, can inhibit hair growth and trigger the development of prostate cells.

It's thought that the androgen dihydrotestosterone (DHT) increases in bald men, causing the hair follicles to shrink gradually. As the follicles get smaller, the hair weakens and eventually stops growing. DHT also has been implicated in the development of prostate cancer.

The U.S. National Cancer Institute estimates there will be more than 240,000 new cases of prostate cancer this year. The prevalence of baldness increases with age, and it affects about 40 million men in the United States.

The research was scheduled for presentation at a news conference Tuesday at the American Urological Association annual meeting in Atlanta.

The study involved 214 patients aged 59 to 70 years old with elevated prostate-specific antigen test numbers (averaging 5.8). The men had all been referred for a prostate biopsy. Baldness was assessed on a four-point scale -- just in the front, just a little on the top, moderate top and sides and severe top and sides -- before the biopsy was taken.

The more severe a man's balding pattern, the more strongly it was associated with a positive biopsy.

Men with a normal PSA were not included in the study, which found an association between baldness and prostate cancer risk, but did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship.

The researchers also sought to determine whether there is a relationship between the relative length of a man's index and ring fingers and the diagnosis of prostate cancer, a question raised by previous studies. Some researchers have thought that the level of sex hormones in the womb could prenatally affect both finger length and predisposition to prostate cancer. No association was found in this study, however.

Dr. Nelson Stone, a clinical professor of urology and radiation oncology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City, questioned the potential value of the baldness study.

Stone said the researchers should have tested for hormone levels to see what association, if any, the amount of testosterone and DHT had on the diagnosis of prostate cancer.

"The incidence of baldness goes up with age, and we know that testosterone levels fall with age, and we still don't know why," he said.

Complicating the issue is also the question of whether the men with a positive biopsy had predominantly aggressive or nonaggressive forms of prostate cancer, Stone said.

Dr. Tobias Kohler, public liaison to the American Urological Association, said that, with or without hair on their heads, men can't relax about prostate cancer.

"There is a link between baldness and prostate cancer, but it could be due to some other factor -- perhaps something in the environment or something genetic, " he said. "I would approach this study with caution."

Because this study was presented at a medical meeting, the data and conclusions should be viewed as preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.

More information

Visit the U.S. National Cancer Institute for more about prostate cancer.

SOURCES: Neil Fleshner, M.D., professor, surgical urology, University of Toronto, and Love Chair in Prostate Cancer Prevention, Prince Margaret Hospital, Toronto; Nelson Stone, M.D., clinical professor, urology and radiation oncology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York City; Tobias Kohler, M.D., M.P.H., assistant professor, urology, Illinois University School of Medicine, and public liaison, American Urological Association; May 22, 2012, presentation, AUA annual meeting, Atlanta

Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Despite Treatment, Employees with Depression Generate Higher Absentee Costs, According to Thomson Reuters Study
2. Minorities Not Treated at Higher-Quality Centers
3. Black Women at Higher Risk of Birth-Related Heart Problem
4. Risk of Childhood Obesity Higher Among Minorities
5. Death After Discharge Rates Higher in Elderly ICU Patients
6. Anti-depressants bring higher risk of developing cataracts: UBC-Vancouver Coastal Health research
7. K-State Study Finds Abundance of Food Stores, Not Lack of Them, Puts Low-Income Women In Small Cities at Higher Risk of Obesity
8. Do Liberals, Atheists Have Higher IQs?
9. Study: Low Levels of Vitamin D Linked to Higher Rates of Asthma in African American Kids
10. More Money, Increased Participation and Higher Nutritional Standards for School Meals
11. Hearts and Minds Promotes Wellness; African Americans Living with Mental Illness Have Higher Risk for Other Illnesses.
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Do Bald Men Face Higher Risk of Prostate Cancer? 
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... A recent article published June 14 on E Online details ... to state that individuals are now more comfortable seeking to undergo not only the ... and cheek reduction. The Los Angeles area medical group, Beverly Hills Physicians (BHP) notes ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... June 19, 2016 is ... associated with chronic pain and the benefits of holistic treatments, Serenity Recovery Center ... suffering with Sickle Cell Disease. , Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is a disorder of ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... The Pulmonary ... Dallas that it will receive two significant new grants to support its work ... marked its 25th anniversary by recognizing patients, medical professionals and scientists for their ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Dr. Amanda Cheng, an ... Dr. Cheng has extensive experience with all areas of orthodontics, including robotic Suresmile ... orthodontics. , Micro-osteoperforation is a revolutionary adjunct to orthodontic treatment. It can ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... NY (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Topical BioMedics, Inc, makers of Topricin ... companies that call for a minimum wage raise to $12 an hour by 2020 and ... This will restore the lost value of the minimum wage, assure the wage floor does ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016   Pulmatrix, Inc ... company developing innovative inhaled drugs, announced today that it ... Russell Investments reconstituted its comprehensive set of U.S. ... "This is an important milestone for Pulmatrix," said ... increase shareholder awareness of our progress in developing drugs ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Any dentist who has ... of the current process. Many of them do not even ... technical difficulties and high laboratory costs involved. And those who ... it at such a high cost that the majority of ... Dr. Parsa Zadeh , founder of Dental Evolutions ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Capricor Therapeutics, ... a biotechnology company focused on the discovery, development ... patient enrollment in its ongoing randomized HOPE-Duchenne clinical ... 50% of its 24-patient target. Capricor expects the ... quarter of 2016, and to report top line ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: