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Fired Due to Prostate Cancer
Prostate cancer affects the prostate gland, a small gland that produces seminal fluid. Prostate cancer is among the most common forms of cancer. Some prostate cancers grow very slowly and are confined to prostate gland. These cancers may require little or no treatment and present little threat of serious harm. Other forms of prostate cancer are aggressive and can spread quickly to other parts of the body. Outcomes for prostate cancer are best when the cancer is still confined to the prostate gland. Prostate cancer begins when cells in the prostate gland undergo changes in their DNA. The changes in the DNA result in the cells dividing more rapidly than normal cells. The accumulation of abnormal cells can form a tumor, which continues to grow, invading nearby tissue. Some of the abnormal cells may eventually separate and spread to other parts of the body (metastasis).The Prevalence of Prostate Cancer
Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in American men. According to the American Cancer Society, about 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime. Prostate cancer affects mainly older men and is not common among men under the age of 40. While prostate cancer is a significant cause of death, most men diagnosed with prostate cancer do not die from the disease.Screening Tests for Prostate Cancer
Prostate-specific Antigen test is One Method of Screening for Prostate Cancer. a Blood Sample is Obtained From the Patient and is Analyzed for Prostate-specific Antigen, a Substance Naturally Produced by the Prostate Gland. While a Small Amount of the Substance is Normally Found in the Bloodstream, Elevated Levels of Prostate-specific Antigen May Indicate Prostate Cancer. a Patient With Elevated Levels May Need to Undergo Further testing.
Digital Rectal Exam is Another Method of Screening for Prostate Cancer. if the Examining Physician Identifies an Enlargement, Lumps, or Hardness on the Prostate Gland, the Patient May Need to Undergo Further Testing.Diagnosing Prostate Cancer
If a screening test for prostate cancer detects an abnormality, the patient may be referred for further testing.
Ultrasound is Performed by Inserting a Small Probe Into the Rectum to Create an Image of the Prostate Gland. it is Used to Detect Abnormal growth.
If a More Detailed Image of the Prostate Gland is Required, the Patient Will Undergo magnetic Resonance imaging.
If Deemed Necessary After Conducting Less Intrusive Testing, a prostate Biopsy is Performed by Inserting a Small Needle Into the Prostate Gland to Collect a Tissue Sample. the Tissue Sample is Then Analyzed to Determine Whether Cancer Cells Are Present.
If the Prostate Biopsy Confirms a Cancer Diagnosis, the Lab Will Also Determine the Level of Aggressiveness of the Cancer by Identifying the Degree to Which the Cancerous Cells Differ From Normal Cells. if the Difference is Great, Then the Cancer is Likely to Be Aggressive and Spread to Other Parts of the Body.Prostate Cancer Treatment and Working
A prostate cancer diagnosis may result in side effects from treatment. A prostate cancer diagnosis may reduce the ability of an individual to work. It may increase financial stress on the individual and undermine career and retirement goals. Because of increased survival rates, many men experience prostate cancer as a chronic illness. Given older men are working more now than ever and prostate cancer is more prevalent in older men, men in the workforce are increasingly diagnosed with prostate cancer. Unfortunately, this is often when men start having problems with their employer.Leaves of Absence and Prostate Cancer
If diagnosed with prostate cancer, you may need to take time off from work. Treatment (such as radiation therapy) or surgery (such as a radical prostatectomy) may prevent you from maintaining a fulltime work schedule. In fact, you may require significant time off from work to recover or cope with side effects. Fortunately, California has developed a protective legal framework designed to afford workers the opportunity to take a job-protected leave of absence from work for disabilities, serious illness, and medical conditions such as prostate cancer. Should you require a leave of absence, you will likely be eligible to take a leave from work either under the California Family Rights Act (California Government Code sections 12945.1, 12945.2, and 19702.3), or as an accommodation under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) (California Government Code section 12900, et seq). The California Family Rights Act permits workers to take up to a 12-week unpaid, job-protected leave of absence from their place of employment to care for their own serious health conditions (such as prostate cancer). FEHA provides workers with a separate right to take an unpaid, job-protected leave of absence from their place of employment or other reasonable accommodations if they are unable to work or are unable to perform some of their job duties because of a physical disability (such as prostate cancer). You can either take the leave of absence in one large block of time and you can take time off on an intermittent (noncontinuous) basis. For example, you may need to take the morning off from work on several consecutive Wednesdays for doctor’s visits or treatment.Being Fired Due to Prostate Cancer
FEHA prohibits discrimination based on disability. Disabilities are defined broadly as conditions that limit a major life activity, and include physical disabilities, mental disabilities, and medical conditions such as cancer.
Unfortunately, despite anti-discrimination laws such as FEHA, your cancer diagnosis and need for a leave of absence may put you at odds with your employer. This may ultimately lead to you being fired due to prostate cancer. When you go out on a leave of absence for prostate cancer, your boss may feel that she or he is being left in the lurch. You are out on leave and either your work is not getting done or someone else, who has their own work to do, is also assigned to do your work. Your employer may have to hire someone less proficient to temporarily do your job, and this may be costing your employer money and customers. Your employer may be concerned that this is just the first of many leaves of absence you will require due to your cancer diagnosis. Your boss may decide to come up with an excuse, a pretext to fire you (a reason, which if believed, would provide a non-discriminatory reason for firing you, e.g. poor work performance even though never before has your performance been an issue) so he or she does not have to deal with the situation any longer.Contact Us
If your employer has fired you from your job due to prostate cancer or another form of cancer, or if your employer or former employer has otherwise violated your rights under California law, call the experienced employment attorneys at Kokozian Law Firm, APC or Contact Us via our online form.