Cancer screening is the process of looking for the presence of a cancer before signs or symptoms develop. Cancer is easiest to treat while it is still small and has not spread to other parts of the body. By the time symptoms develop, a cancer has already spread into surrounding tissue or to other parts of the body.
Most prostate cancers are slow growing and may not cause symptoms. There are two types of screening procedures for prostate cancer.
Prostate cancer screening is the process of looking for prostate cancer before symptoms develop. It is important to note that most prostate cancers are either slow-growing or do not grow at all, and some are asymptomatic.
The following screening tests are used to detect prostate cancer:
In most cases, normal results from DRE and PSA tests indicate that it is unlikely a cancer is present.
The only way to know for certain if an individual has prostate cancer is a biopsy. A biopsy is a minor surgery that removes a small part of the prostate for review under a microscope. Doctors can identify the presence of prostate cancer depending on the appearance of the cells within the biopsy sample.
Prostate cancer screening recommendations vary by organization. Speak with your doctor about whether you should be screened. They will be able to assess your risk factors and determine if screening is right for you.
Risk factors for prostate cancer include:
In addition to determining whether you may benefit from prostate cancer screening, your doctor will be able to discuss all potential benefits and risks of screening.