Risk Management & Treatment

Factors that affect prostate cancer risk

Every man is at risk for prostate cancer and the risk increases with age. A man in the general population has about a 12 percent lifetime risk of developing prostate cancer. This means that 12 out of every 100 men will get prostate cancer in their lifetime. 

African-American men have a higher lifetime risk for prostate cancer and a higher risk for younger-onset prostate cancer than men of other races and ethnicities.

Genes with inherited mutations linked to prostate cancer risk 

Inherited mutations in the genes listed below have also been linked to an increased risk for prostate cancer. Note: the exact risk for some of the genes listed have not been well established. 

  • HOXB13

*Men with inherited mutations in BRCA1 and BRCA2 are more likely to develop metastatic prostate cancer than men without inherited mutations. 

** More research is needed to confirm a link between prostate cancer and an inherited mutation in this gene.

  • Ideally, experts recommend that men at high risk for prostate cancer receive their screening from a high-risk specialty center. If you do not have access to a high-risk screening center, find out if your urologist regularly sees high-risk patients and if they are familiar with screening recommendations.
  • The Urology Care Foundation has a tool which allows you to search for urologists in your area. 
  • The National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated comprehensive cancer centers deliver cutting-edge cancer care to patients in communities across the United States. Most centers have specialized screening and prevention centers for high risk people. Find a center near you and learn about its specific research capabilities, programs, and initiatives.
  • Register for the FORCE Message Boards to get referrals from other members. Once you register, you can post on the Find a Specialist board to connect with other people who share your situation.
Last updated August 31, 2021