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The prostate

Men and women discussing prostate cancer

This page tells you about the prostate gland. There is information about

 

A quick guide to what's on this page

Where the prostate is

Men have a small gland about the size of a walnut called the prostate gland. The prostate is below the bladder. It surrounds the first part of the tube (urethra), which carries urine from the bladder to the penis. The same tube also carries sex fluid (semen). The prostate gland is divided into 2 lobes: the left lobe and the right lobe.

What the prostate does

The prostate gland makes the fluid part of semen. It needs the male sex hormone, testosterone, to grow and function. Some treatments for prostate cancer work by reducing the levels of testosterone.

 

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What the prostate is

Men have a small gland about the size of a walnut called the prostate gland. The prostate is below the bladder. It surrounds the first part of the tube (urethra), which carries urine from the bladder to the penis. The same tube also carries sex fluid (semen). The prostate gland is divided into 2 lobes, to the left and the right of a central groove.

Diagram showing the position of the prostate and rectum

 

What the prostate does

The prostate gland produces a thick clear fluid that is an important part of the semen. The growth and function of the prostate depends on the male sex hormone testosterone, which is produced in the testes. Some treatments for prostate cancer work by lowering the levels of testosterone.

 

More information on prostate cancer

You can contact the Cancer Research UK information nurses by clicking on contact us.

There are books and booklets about prostate cancer, some of which are free. You can look at the prostate cancer reading list for details about written information. On our prostate cancer organisations page you can find out about who you can talk to about your prostate cancer or any problems it causes.

If you want to find people to share experiences with online, you could use Cancer Chat, our online forum.

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Updated: 20 February 2014