Table of Contents
- What is the Prostate?
- What is Prostate Cancer?
- Black Men and Prostate Cancer
- Risk Factors
- Screening and PSA Test
- Diagnosis and Staging
- I’ve Been Diagnosed… Now What?
- Lifestyle Changes
- Sexual Health
- For Caregivers: Friends and Family
Prostate Cancer Screening
94% of men discover they have prostate cancer from screening tests. Only around 5% of men discover it from urinary or erectile symptoms. Therefore, it is vitally important for men to do prostate cancer screening.
If you are of African/Caribbean ancestry, have a family history of prostate cancer and are 40 years or older, you should get a PSA test.
To screen for prostate cancer, one of the most common tests is the PSA test. PSA stands for Prostate Specific Antigen.
The PSA test is a straightforward blood test that works by measuring the amount of PSA in your blood. This works because under normal circumstances, prostate cells release a certain level of PSA. However, since prostate cancer cells grow at a rapid and uncontrolled pace they create much higher levels of PSA than normal. Detecting a higher than normal level of PSA may indicate the presence of cancer, although some individuals naturally have higher PSA levels.
A better indicator of prostate cancer is a significant change in PSA levels compared to one’s baseline levels. This is why doing early and regular screening is extremely important to allow your doctor to establish a baseline and monitor for these changes to catch it early.
If a significant change or elevation of your PSA level is found, your doctor will have to perform other tests to definitively confirm if it is prostate cancer.