Town supports Prostate Cancer UK to raise awareness
- 1 in 8 men in the UK will get prostate cancer in their lifetime
- Club supports Prostate Cancer UK to raise awareness
- Comments from Town supporter Danny Burkey
Every year, over 12,000 men die of prostate cancer in the UK. It is the most common cancer in men and statistics show that 1 in 8 men will get the disease in their lifetime.
That’s why this Men’s Health Week and Father’s Day, we want to support the largest men’s health charity, Prostate Cancer UK in their mission to save and enrich the lives of those with the disease, starting by sharing clear and accurate health information to help dads, brothers, sons and friends make the right choices when it comes to their health.
A new study released by Prostate Cancer UK for its “What on Earth is a prostate?!” campaign - which surveyed over 2,000 men aged 18+ on their knowledge of the prostate and prostate cancer - has highlighted the need for continued and heightened efforts to ensure men have the facts they need to understand their risk of the disease.
Town supporter Danny Burkey from Ossett was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2021 after experiencing urinary problems. Unfortunately, his cancer wasn’t caught early enough and further tests revealed it had spread beyond the prostate into his bones meaning it was only treatable and no longer curable.
Danny, who first started supporting Town in the 2000/01 season with his oldest son Neil, then subsequently attended games with his youngest son, Conor, wants to raise awareness of prostate cancer and help address the gaps in some people’s knowledge about the disease.
Speaking to htafc.com, Danny said:
“The first thing I want to try and get across to my fellow Town supporters is that there is no screening programme for prostate cancer in the UK, and that even if a man was classed as high risk, for example if he’s over 50, black and over 45, or with a family history of this type of cancer, he won’t be invited for tests.
“Recent surveys done by Prostate Cancer UK showed that 60% of men would be worried about having a rectal exam, which maybe isn’t that surprising. But the reality is that a PSA blood test is actually the first step the NHS use in checking for the cancer.
“Living in the North like most Town supporters do is sadly also a factor as there’s a clear North-South divide in diagnoses. In Yorkshire and the North East, 1 in 5 men will be diagnosed too late to be cured, like I was, so it’s a real postcode lottery.
“So many men also don’t realise that in the early stages when it’s still curable, there’s usually no symptoms at all until it has already spread. That’s why it’s so important for men to speak to their GP if they’re concerned or use Prostate Cancer UK’s risk checker which is very quick and easy to complete and will tell men if they’re in a high-risk group and what to do about it.”
Prostate Cancer UK report that three quarters (74%) of men surveyed did not know what the prostate does, and nearly half (44%) did not know where it was in their body. This unfamiliarity with the prostate carried through to dangerous misconceptions about the most common cancer in men.
Over 52,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year, but the disease is treatable if caught early. New figures show that only 35% of men realise that early-stage prostate cancer often has no symptoms, while over a third (39%) think it will show symptoms or signs always or most of the time.
A man’s risk of prostate cancer increases if they are aged over 50, Black and over 45, or have a family history of the disease. But worryingly over 82% of men did not think a man’s ethnicity increased his risk of prostate cancer, more than half (52%) did not realise having a family history of it could increase a man’s risk, and a similar number (56%) did not know age is a risk factor.
Facts about Prostate Cancer:
- Every 45 minutes one man dies from prostate cancer – that's more than 12,000 men every year.
- Around 475,000 men are living with prostate cancer.
- A 30-second online risk checker is available at prostatecanceruk.org/risk-checker
- Prostate cancer mainly affects men over 50 and the risk increases with age. But the risk is higher for Black men (1 in 4) or men with a family history of prostate cancer, so they should speak to their GP from age 45.
- Anyone with concerns about prostate cancer may contact Prostate Cancer UK's Specialist Nurses in confidence on 0800 074 8383 or online via the Live Chat instant messaging service: www.prostatecanceruk.org. The Specialist Nurse phone service is free to landlines and open from 9am to 5pm on weekdays, 10am to 5pm on Wednesdays.
For a wealth of resources and for more information on prostate cancer, please visit Prostate Cancer UK’s website HERE.
The Club would like to thank Danny for sharing his story.