Mapping the health of 15,000 men diagnosed with prostate cancer

Surgery cancer patientSurgery. Photo:

The ongoing health condition of 15,000 male cancer patients is to be mapped.

Everyone diagnosed with prostate cancer this year,and in the three years ahead, will be included in the survey, which is the first of its kind in this country.

The Cancer Registry is responsible for the survey, which is supported by the ‘Movember Foundation’. The first questionnaires were sent out by post, and online, after Easter.

‘We hope this will lead to us providing this patient group with better treatment, and, in particular, make it easier to decide which treatment is best for the individual,’ said Tom Børge Johannesen, Manager of the Cancer Project.

Very many prostate patients are affected by impotence and urinary leakage.

Johannesen emphasised that follow-up with regard to side effects (such as impotence, and urinary leakage) are equally important.

Anyone involved will be followed up after one, and three years. At the same time, the Cancer Registry hopes that the survey will continue beyond the three years that have been set aside for the project, and that patients with other types of cancer will eventually have their own health mapping and survey examination.

‘We were a bit nervous about how this would be received, as there are many intimate questions about the men’s sex lives, problems with urination, and their intestinal function. But so far we have not received any negative feedback’, said Tom Johannesen.

He believes the many prostate patients who have been exposed to problems in recent years have made it easier to conduct such an investigation.
‘They have paved the way, now it is possible to talk about this’.

One of those who has talked about living with prostate cancer is Arne Røseth from Oslo. After working with the gastrointestinal tract as a special field, Røseth has now launched his own contribution to putting prostate cancer patients on the agenda – the blue band.

He bought a load of them in London. He wears one tied around his neck. He hopes that as many as possible will do the same.‘I am very pleased with this survey.

It is important that the everyday lives of all affected are mapped in a thorough and scientific manner so that those who decide to take treatment can make the right decisions,’ said Røseth.

9 out of 10 have problems related to the disease

He is supported by physician, psychiatrist and sexologist, Haakon Aars, who says that up to 90% of all prostate patients may experience
erection problems. However, many people get their potency back when they are treated correctly.

Aars has learned that it may turn out fine.

‘I had prostate cancer,’ he says.

‘It was discovered in 2005, and I was operated on at Radium Hospital with Robotic surgery. But I have recovered my potency, and I do not struggle with urinary leakage. I am healthy; it is important to say this, it shows that there is hope.’



Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today