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Area I health officials are hosting a Men’s Health Week through Friday to educate soldier and civilians on prostrate and testicular cancer and erectile dysfunction.

Ken Cobb, health promoter, warned that it’s never too early to think about these problems.

Cobb said men should examine themselves regularly when showering to check for abnormal lumps or soreness that are signs of testicular cancer, which affects about 7,500 men in the United States each year.

Cyclist Lance Armstrong recovered from the disease and went on to win the Tour de France a record six times.

And men over 40 should have yearly blood screening for prostate cancer. He said the disease affects 100,000 American men each year and that about 30,000 men die yearly from it.

Cobb said erectile dysfunction is also a common problem that is often treatable.

“If it doesn’t work, go get it checked,” he said.

Tobacco use is among causes of erectile dysfunction because it constricts blood flow, he said.

Unfortunately many men do not do anything about these diseases until it is too late, Cobb said.

“We tough it out and then find out we should have come in earlier,” he said.

More information about men’s health issues is available through military health care providers or area health promoters, he said.

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Seth Robson is a Tokyo-based reporter who has been with Stars and Stripes since 2003. He has been stationed in Japan, South Korea and Germany, with frequent assignments to Iraq, Afghanistan, Haiti, Australia and the Philippines.
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