Much like any other part of the body, there is not just one type of cancer that is unique to the prostate. When people refer to prostate cancer it could actually be in reference to multiple different kinds of cancer. The term prostate cancer simply means the cancer has formed or originated on the prostate.

What Is The Prostate?

The Prostate is a small walnut sized gland located near the rectum and bladder of men. It helps create the fluid that makes up semen. Because of its location in the body, signs of prostate cancer often include neurological symptoms such as bladder issues, blood in the urine, or pain when urinating. These symptoms do not mean you have prostate cancer but could be an early warning sign. If you are experiencing any urological symptoms is it important to see a urologist as soon as possible.

Types of Prostate Cancer

There are multiple different types of cancer that can form on the prostate. Some are more common than others. Let’s take a look at what those types of cancers may look like.


This is the most common type of cancer that forms on the prostate. It can form on any part of the body, really and is made up of glandular epithelial cells. In the prostate this type of cancer is also called glandular prostate cancer.

Symptoms of this type of cancer of the prostate can include frequent urination, pain when urinating or ejaculating, and blood in the semen.

This type of cancer is generally slow to grow and spread so treatment may look like monitoring the cancer, surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, immunotherapy, or hormone therapy. If the cancer is only found on the prostate a prostatectomy could be an option where the prostate is completely removed.

There are two main subtypes of adenocarcinoma cancer of the prostate:

  • Acinar adenocarcinoma (conventional adenocarcinoma): This type of cancer accounts for almost all prostate cancer diagnosis. The cancer cells line the prostate fluid secreting glands at the back of the prostate near the rectum. It can likely be felt during a doctor’s digital rectal exam.
  • Prostatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA): This cancer is more rare and also more aggressive. It develops in the cells lining the tubes and ducts of the prostate This cancer type doesn’t necessarily increase PSA levels, making it harder to detect.

Rare Prostate Cancers

There are multiple other types of cancer that can affect the prostate but they are incredibly rare when compared to Adenocarcinoma diagnosis.

  • Transitional cell carcinoma, can start in the urethra or bladder and spread to the prostate or, very rarely, vice-versa
  • Neuroendocrine tumors, which don’t produce PSA, appearing in the nerve and gland cells that make and release hormones into the bloodstream
  • Small cell carcinoma, the most aggressive type of neuroendocrine cancer in the prostate that develops in small round cells of the neuroendocrine system
  • Squamous cell carcinoma, a very rare, fast-growing form of prostate cancer that starts in the flat cells that cover the prostate glands
  • Prostate sarcoma (also called soft-tissue prostate cancer), which develops outside the prostate glands in the soft tissue—the muscle and nerves—of the prostate

The type of prostate cancer you have will decide the treatment to best eliminate the cancer cells from your prostate and slow the spread to other parts of your body. Our prostate cancer center in Dayton, Ohio has an experienced team in treating multiple different types of prostate cancer. Urology specialists of Ohio are here to support you in your prostate cancer treatment options.