Reproductive disorders are common and can affect individuals of all ages. Benign condition such as Leiomyomas commonly known as uterine fibroids are more prevalent in women, with the highest incidence occurring in black women (Huether & McCance, 2017, p. 816). Prostate cancer is a reproductive disorder affecting men, and death from prostate cancer are highest in males of African descent within the Caribbean. (Huether & McCance, 2017, p. 886) Although these conditions are different in pathology, they have some similarities especially as it relates to risk factor and ethnicity.
Similarities and Differences
One similarity is that both disorders are related to hormonal balance within the body. Although the specific cause of uterine fibroids is unknown, hormonal fluctuation of progesterone, and estrogen can affect the size of tumors and reoccurrence of the disorder (Huether & McCance, 2017, p. 817). Prostate cancer also has hormonal factors involving estrogen and testosterone, however the role of androgens in prostate cancer occurrence is still being investigated (Huether & McCance, 2017, p. 867).
Another similarity is the role that diet has in these reproductive disorders. Like uterine fibroids, prostate cancer is also linked to obesity and is suggested to be a more aggressive forms of the disease (Huether & McCance, 2017). One if the biggest differences is how the disorders are detected. Uterine fibroids are detected usually after reports of abnormal vaginal bleeding and complaints of lower abdominal or pelvic pain. Unlike prostate cancer, which is screen annually beginning at age 50, currently there is no blood test to detect uterine fibroids. (Huether & McCance, 2017).
Diagnosis and Treatment
Although, prostate cancer is very prevalent in black men, one study examined the underrepresentation of black men in prostate cancer research and screenings. The study found that black men were less willing to participate based on barriers such as mistrust of health care providers, likening research to the “Tuskegee experiment” (Rogers et al., 2018). Barrier such as fear can pose issues with early detection of the disease and treatment, if populations are reluctant to seek health care.
Diagnosis of uterine fibroids consist of bi-manual exam conducted by the clinician, along with ultrasound or (MRI) (Huether & McCance, 2017, p. 817). In a study examining the link between cardiovascular disorders and fibroids, factors such as stress and increased in alles which promote fibro proliferative diseases such as fibroids and narrowing of arteries are more frequent in women of African descent (Noel, Gadson, & Hendessi, 2019). The study also suggest that African American women have greater treatment expectations, experience more financial challenges, and lack satisfaction with treatment outcomes (Noel et al., 2019, p. 3).
Huether, S. E., & McCance, K. L. (2017). Understanding Pathophysiology (6th ed.). St. Louis, MS: Elsevier.
Noel, N. L., Gadson, A. K., & Hendessi, P. (2019). Uterine, fibroids, race, ethnicity, and cardiovascular outcomes. Current Cardiovascular Risk Reports, 13(28), 1-7. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12170-019-0622-0
Rogers, C. R., Rovito, M. J., Hussein, M., Obidike, O. J., Pratt, R., Alexander, M., … Warlick, C. (2018). Attitudes toward genomic testing and prostate cancer research among blacken. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 55(5), S103-S111. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.amepre.2018.05.028