New Brunswick, N.J., November 6, 2020 – Al Roker, longtime television personality and current weather anchor on NBC’s Today Show, announced today that he has been diagnosed with prostate cancer.
Prostate cancer is marked by an uncontrolled growth of cells in the prostate gland. According to the American Cancer Society, prostate cancer is the most common cancer in American men other than skin cancer. About 191,930 new cases of prostate cancer are expected to be diagnosed in the United States this year with about 33,330 deaths from this disease. In the state of New Jersey, the estimated number of new cases this year is about 6,010 with around 810 deaths. It is estimated that about one in nine men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime.
While the exact cause of prostate cancer may not be known, a man’s risk is higher if a man is over the age of 50 and if an immediate blood relative has had prostate cancer. Additionally, race is a factor as the disease is more common in African American men than white men.
The following clinical experts from the Prostate Cancer Program at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey are available for comment on this topic:
Isaac Kim, MD, PhD, is chief of Urologic Oncology and executive director of the Prostate Cancer Program at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey. He is also medical director of robotic surgery at Monmouth Medical Center, an RWJBarnabas health facility. Dr. Kim has a specialty in robotic and minimally-invasive surgery and performs a high volume of these surgeries on prostate cancer patients each year. He is also a professor of surgery at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.
Thomas L. Jang, MD, MPH is associate chief of Urologic Oncology and urologic oncologist at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, and associate professor of surgery at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. Dr. Jang’s expertise includes surgery for patients with advanced stage kidney cancer, complex partial kidney surgeries and managing patients with prostate and bladder cancers.
Biren Saraiya, MD is a medical oncologist in the Prostate Cancer Program at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey. Dr. Saraiya’s clinical expertise includes prostate cancer, kidney cancer, testicular cancer, bladder cancer, and palliative care. He works with closely with basic research scientists and clinical researchers at Rutgers Cancer Institute to develop new therapies for genitourinary cancers. He is also an assistant professor of medicine at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.