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Prostate exam: How is it done and who should have one?

Screening is identifying the early signs of disease in healthy individuals not having any symptoms.  The aim is the diagnosis of a disease early so that treatment is easier and chances of being cured are higher.

Who should get screened for Prostate Cancer?

Men globally above 50 years of age are advised strongly to get an informed talk done at least with their health care provider regarding the diagnosis of prostate cancer.

We recommend that this discussion regarding diagnosis should be done for men in the following ages:-

  • 50-year-old individuals at an average risk of the prostate cancer & are expected to live for a decade more at least
  • 45-year-old individuals at high risk of developing a prostate cancer. This comprises men having a brother, father or a son who was diagnosed with a prostate cancer when they were below 65 years of age
  • 40-year-old individuals with at least 2 relatives of first-degree who had prostate cancer when they were in an earlier age.

Tests available for Prostate Cancer:

  • 2 main tests are common for screening a prostate cancer. They are DRE or Digital Rectal Exam & PSA or Prostate-Specific Antigen test.
  • None of the tests can confirm a prostate cancer. But they can unfold some strong signs of a prostate problem and specify that it requires further test known as a prostate biopsy.
  • Men who need to be screened should be tested with PSA blood test. Upon giving the consent, usually, a DRE is done at an early phase of screening.
  • During a DRE, a doctor or a nurse inserts a gloved and lubricated finger into the rectum. This is done to check the size of the prostate & to feel the abnormalities.
  • During a PSA test, blood samples are taken to measure the levels of PSA in our blood. PSA is a protein which is made by a prostate.