Who We are
The North and East Devon Prostate Support Association was formed in 2003 and shortly thereafter was registered as a Charity. Since that time it has established itself as a source of help and support for men who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer. This support is also extended to their wives, partners, friends and family.
Our aims are twofold:
- To create awareness of the disease and of the necessity for early diagnosis.
- Secondly we provide non-medical support to men, and their families who are worried about prostate cancer or have the disease.
We meet as an Association 4 times per year in Exeter. In addition we have local area groups in Sidmouth; Budleigh Salterton/Exmouth; Barnstaple/Torridge; Tiverton / Cullompton / Honiton and Exeter who hold their own individual meetings.
What We Do
Our Association meetings in Exeter always attract a good turnout as we are able to obtain top quality speakers on subjects relating to or linked to prostate cancer. Frequently these come from the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital which is now a Centre of Excellence for the treatment of prostate cancer and has links with the University of Exeter in research and training.
Typical subjects covered have been on developments in diagnosis and treatment, diet, complementary therapy, lifestyle etc. Our relationship with both the RD&E in Exeter and the North Devon Hospital in Barnstaple has always been most helpful in our work and we are grateful for their encouragement and support over the years.
A more positive tool though is our in house telephone directory of members who are willing to discuss the treatments that they themselves have undergone or are currently receiving. This is particularly useful to men who may be concerned about the great variety of treatments available to them or who simply want to compare notes on their progress with other men in similar circumstances.
A telephone call to one of our primary contacts can put you in touch with someone who has been through the treatment recommended for you. Alternatively, if you have already completed or are undergoing treatment and would like to pass on your experience by joining our telephone directory, please get in touch.
Why We Do It
Prostate cancer is currently the most common cancer in men. In the UK statistics show that around 40,000 new cases are diagnosed every year and that one man dies of prostate cancer every hour. The prostate gland is found only in men. It is about the size of a walnut and is situated just below the bladder and surrounds the urethra. The cause of prostate cancer is unknown but it seems to be linked to increasing age. Over 85% of prostate cancer cases are diagnosed in men over 60. You are however 2.5 times more likely to develop prostate cancer if your father or brother has it. When urine is passed it flows via the urethra through the prostate gland and out through the penis. Any problems with the prostate may cause urinary symptoms such as:
- Difficulty starting to pass urine.
- A frequent need to urinate, especially at night.
- Discomfort when passing urine
- Bursting to go but only managing a trickle
- Straining or having difficulty to get started.
- The bladder still feels full after passing urine
- Lower back pain or in the pelvis.
If you have any of the above, it is not necessarily cancer but speak to your doctor who should be able to advise on any necessary treatments.
For more detailed information about the prostate and prostate cancer click here