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Photos: Soccer Hall of Famer Marcelo Balboa Encourages Men to 'Team Up Against Prostate Cancer'

New Campaign Launches on Father's Day to Encourage Men & Their Families to Take an Active Role in Protecting their Prostate Health

NEW YORK, June 19 /PRNewswire/ -- The son of a professional player and coach, soccer runs in Marcelo Balboa's family, but like many others, so does prostate cancer. In 1988, Balboa's grandfather was diagnosed with the disease. That's why Balboa is joining with the Prostate Conditions Education Council (PCEC) and oncology leader sanofi-aventis to kick off TEAM UP AGAINST PROSTATE CANCER, this Father's Day Weekend. TEAM UP AGAINST PROSTATE CANCER urges men to take charge of their prostate health.

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Prostate cancer is the number one cancer diagnosed among men in the United States with approximately 186,320 diagnoses in 2008. An estimated 28,000 American men die from prostate cancer each year; however, prostate cancer may be effectively treated when detected early.

"Because my grandfather had prostate cancer, I am at a higher risk of developing the disease," says Balboa. "I felt it was important to join Prostate Conditions Education Council and sanofi-aventis on TEAM UP AGAINST PROSTATE CANCER because I want to encourage men over 50 or who, like me, have a family history of prostate cancer, to talk to their doctor about their prostate health and screening options."

The goal of TEAM UP AGAINST PROSTATE CANCER is to encourage men to know their risk of developing the disease, to speak with their doctors about prostate health, and, if diagnosed with prostate cancer, to draft their own all-star multidisciplinary team consisting of a urologist along with radiation and medical oncologists for the best treatment strategy.

"Teamwork is as important in cancer care as it is on the soccer field. When treating prostate cancer patients, I consult with urologists as well as a radiation oncologist as part of a multidisciplinary team," said Dr. Jorge A. Garcia, Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Center. "Together, we explore the available treatment options -- including surgery, radiation, hormonal therapy, and chemotherapy -- to determine the best course of treatment for our patient."

"We are proud to partner with sanofi-aventis on this important initiative in answer to the need for greater awareness of prostate cancer risk among men, particularly those age 50 and older, or with a family history," said Wendy Poage, M.H.A., Executive Director, PCEC. "We hope the TEAM UP AGAINST PROSTATE CANCER campaign will give men a strategy and not get sidelined by prostate cancer."

Balboa will be autographing free copies of the new TEAM UP AGAINST PROSTATE CANCER Playbook during the June 20th soccer game, at Giants Stadium, between the New York Red Bulls and the Seattle Sounders FC at the TEAM UP AGAINST PROSTATE CANCER booth hosted by PCEC and sanofi-aventis. The Playbook coaches men and their families on how to protect their prostate health, recognize the signs of prostate cancer, and how to draft a multidisciplinary treatment team, consisting of a urologist along with radiation and medical oncologists, so all treatment options can be considered. Available in English and Spanish, the Playbook, as well as free PSA screening referrals, can be downloaded at, or obtained by calling the toll-free number, 1-866-321-3114.

In addition to the launch at the Red Bulls game, TEAM UP AGAINST PROSTATE CANCER booths will also be on-site at two additional Major League Soccer games. The second event will be held at The Home Depot Center in Los Angeles when the L.A. Galaxy host Chivas USA on August 29 as a lead into Prostate Cancer Awareness Month in September. The final TEAM UP AGAINST PROSTATE CANCER booth will kick off the 2009 Prostate Cancer Awareness Week at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Illinois when the Chicago Fire take on the Columbus Crew on September 20. Free copies of the TEAM UP AGAINST PROSTATE CANCER Playbook will be available at both locations as well as information on free PSA screenings.

"Since my grandfather's battle with prostate cancer, I have made an effort to be more conscious of my health. I have learned that if diagnosed with prostate cancer, the best offensive treatment strategy is to draft a team of medical experts to help ensure that all treatment options, including surgery, radiation, hormonal therapy, and chemotherapy, are explored," said Balboa. "I strongly encourage men to visit to download the TEAM UP AGAINST PROSTATE CANCER Playbook to learn more about prostate health, the importance of knowing your risk, and what to do if diagnosed."

Prostate Cancer

Thanks to improvements in diagnosis and treatment, approximately two million men in the United States are prostate cancer survivors. Research has shown that a multidisciplinary approach -- particularly a close collaboration between urologist and oncologist -- is helping to improve treatment outcomes.

About sanofi-aventis

Sanofi-aventis U.S. is an affiliate of sanofi-aventis, a leading global pharmaceutical company, discovers, develops and distributes therapeutic solutions to improve the lives of everyone. Sanofi-aventis is listed in Paris (Euronext: SAN) and in New York (NYSE: SNY). For more information, visit: or

Prostate Conditions Education Council

A national organization committed to men's health, the Prostate Conditions Education Council (PCEC) -- formally the Prostate Cancer Education Council -- is the nation's leading resource for information on prostate health. The PCEC is dedicated to saving lives through awareness and the education of men, the women in their lives, as well as the medical community about prostate cancer prevalence, the importance of early detection, and available treatment options, as well as other men's health issues. The Council -- comprised of a consortium of leading physicians, health educators, scientists and prostate cancer advocates -- aims to conduct nation wide screenings for men and perform research that will aid in the detection and treatment of prostate conditions. More information is available at

SOURCE Prostate Conditions Education Council
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