Prostate cancer is the most prevalent cancer in men, and the fourth most common cancer in Canada. It is a disease in which cancerous cells form in the tissues of the prostate.

In some types of prostate cancer, the cells grow slowly and stay confined to the prostate gland. However, it is also common for other types of prostate cancer to spread aggressively throughout the body. Prostate cancer that is in its early stages and still confined to the prostate gland has the best chance of being treated successfully.

Expert care when you need it.
Donate to Urologic sciences.


Did you know?

  • 99% of prostate cancer cases occur in men aged 50+.
  • On average, 67 Canadian men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer every day.

What are the symptoms of prostate cancer?

In its early stages, prostate cancer may show no signs or symptoms, which is why it is important to be regularly screened by your doctor. Prostate cancer in its more advanced stages may cause symptoms such as:

  • Increased frequency of urination.
  • Interrupted urine stream.
  • Blood in the urine.
  • Weak or strained urinary stream.
  • Painful urination.
  • Inability to empty bladder.
  • Discomfort when sitting (caused by an enlarged prostate).
  • Persistent pain or stiffness in the hips, pelvis, or back.
  • Unintentional weight loss.
  • Fatigue.

What are the causes of prostate cancer?

Doctors don’t yet have a definitive answer as to what causes prostate cancer. However, we do know that prostate cancer begins when the cells in the prostate develop changes in their DNA.

In cases of prostate cancer, abnormal cells begin to grow and divide in the prostate, accumulating and eventually forming a tumour that can invade nearby tissues. In aggressive cases of prostate cancer, these abnormal cells can spread to other parts of the body.

Prostate cancer treatment

The options for treating prostate cancer largely depend upon factors such as the affected patient’s age, the stage of cancer, and the patient’s overall preferences.

Common treatment types include:

  • Surgery
  • Focal therapies
  • Radiation therapy
  • Chemotherapy
  • Immunotherapy
  • Hormonal therapy
  • Active surveillance

Shell's prostate cancer journey

Shell Busey, host of BCTV’s Home Check, visited his doctor for a routine check-up which revealed he had prostate cancer. Dr. Larry Goldenberg, Director of Development and Supportive Care at the Vancouver Prostate Centre, guided Shell through his diagnosis and discussed the treatment options. Shell decided on surgery and benefited from cutting-edge robotic surgery at VGH. Shell, who has been cancer-free for over eight years, is helping VGH & UBC Hospital Foundation and the VPC raise funds to continue advances in prostate cancer research and care.

Vancouver Prostate Centre

The Vancouver Prostate Centre is recognized and rated as one of the top facilities in North America focused on translational research, turning discoveries into new treatments for men with prostate cancer. Now the Department of Urologic Sciences is looking to build upon the original vision and use the VPC research core facilities and infrastructure to leverage their successes into all the other areas of urology within an aspirational Institute of Urologic Sciences. This will provide BC patients with access to the very best specialists, diagnostics, therapies, research trials and state of the art technologies in areas that go beyond cancer and include some of the most common urologic ailments suffered by men, women and children.

Transforming Urologic care

Join us in investing in creative minds and innovative research. With a goal of raising $35M, the funds from our new Urologic Sciences campaign will be used to bring improved care to BC patients in areas including prostate cancer, kidney and bladder cancer, kidney stones, bladder and pelvic health, kidney transplant, sexual and reproductive health and adolescent transitional urology.

Learn more about our Urologic Sciences campaign.


You can help us bring the best in urologic research and care to BC.
Give today.

Expert care when you need it.
Donate to Urologic sciences.