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Free screening and education event at State Capitol | Health

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Free screening and education event at State Capitol
Free screening and education event at State Capitol

A man has a one in six chance of developing prostate cancer during his lifetime. Men die at a higher rate from prostate cancer than women die of breast cancer in Arkansas.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - The Arkansas Prostate Cancer Foundation (APCF) will host a free prostate cancer education and screening event at the State Capitol, located at 500 Woodlane Ave. in Little Rock, Ark, on January 15 from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. The event is an annual collaboration between APCF and the State Capitol.

Men between the ages of 40 and 75 are encouraged to take advantage of the free preventative-health care services, which will include a brief explanation of prostate health and a blood test for prostate-specific antigen (PSA). Men with a family history of prostate cancer and men that are African-American are in high-risk populations for prostate cancer and are eligible for screening at age 35.

Exams will take place in the mobile screening unit, a converted recreational vehicle motor home (RV) that will be parked at the Capitol front steps.

APCF Executive Director Lauren Talbot said "men will want to be educated about their risk and options regarding screening and treatment. Men who have a father, brother or son diagnosed with prostate cancer have a higher risk of diagnosis themselves.

"It's important to know men can decrease the risk of prostate cancer by practicing healthy lifestyle choices," she said.

According to the Arkansas Central Cancer Registry, approximately 2,000 men in Arkansas will be diagnosed with prostate cancer this year and 300 men will die from the disease. Men in Arkansas die at a higher rate from prostate cancer than women die of breast cancer. In many cases, Talbot said timely detection is the best opportunity to preserve life and quality of life.

"Should a screening result in a diagnosis of prostate cancer, APCF is here to help with understanding the disease and treatment, finding resources, learning what to expect and how to deal with challenges," she said. "We have a legion of men and women who have weathered this storm, ready to help those who are newly diagnosed."

Talbot said she encourages men to establish a baseline PSA score and watch for PSA Velocity, which is the amount and rate a PSA score rises from year-to-year. APCF staff will be available to answer questions and help men determine whether screening is right for them.

For more information about the event and to reserve a spot for the screening, men can contact Billy Parrish at (800) 338-1383. There must be 45 men pre-registered for screening for the event to occur.

About the Arkansas Prostate Cancer Foundation Six prostate cancer survivors and an advisory committee of physicians founded the Arkansas Prostate Cancer Foundation, an independent public charity, in February 2000. The Foundation's mission is to promote awareness, encourage timely detection and support improved treatment of prostate cancer in Arkansas. The Foundation sponsors free prostate cancer information and screening throughout the state, and provides emotional and decision support through its Peer Network and Patient Navigation programs. For more information, visit www.arprostatecancer.org or call toll-free at 1-800-338-1383.