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Prostate Cancer Screening

Prostate cancer is a complex disease from both a physical and psychological standpoint. Modern methods of detection and treatment, including Life Line Screening’s Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) test, mean that many prostate cancers are now found earlier and can be treated more effectively. High PSA levels, combined with a complete physical, digital rectal exam (DRE) and prostate biopsy, are necessary to confirm a diagnosis of prostate cancer.

Screening for Prostate Cancer symptoms

  • PSA Screening 
    • A simple blood test, the PSA Screening measures the amount of prostate-specific antigen (PSA), a protein produced by the prostate gland.
    • An abnormal PSA result is only one indicator of prostate cancer. Further testing, including repeat PSA testing and/or a digital rectal exam (DRE) is often required. The only definitive way to confirm a diagnosis is with a transrectal ultrasound-guided prostate biopsy, which will assign a Gleason score or “grade” to the cancer. This score helps physicians to determine what stage and how advanced the cancer is and assess the need for treatment.

Who should get a PSA screening?

The American Cancer Society recommends the following PSA screening guidelines:

  • Men 50-69 who are at average risk for the disease
  • Men who are 45 years of age and at higher risk either because they are African-American or have a father, brother, or son diagnosed with prostate cancer before age 65
  • Men who are 40 years of age with several first-degree relatives (father, brothers and/or sons) with prostate cancer. This is the highest risk group.

*Screening recommendations for prostate cancer vary among healthcare organizations. Please consult with your physician.

How often should I get a PSA Screening?

  • Testing intervals vary; please consult with your physician for further testing information.

How do I prepare for a PSA Screening?

  • There is no fasting required in preparation for a screening

Warning signs

Many men with early prostate cancer show no symptoms. At more advanced stages, however the following symptoms may be present:

  • Difficulty with urination
  • Blood in the urine
  • Impotence
  • Bone pain in hips, spine and ribs
  • Nerve pain, muscle weakness and numbness in the feet

Risk factors

  • Age
  • Race/ethnicity
  • Nationality
  • Family history

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