September is Prostate Cancer Awareness month and we are here to remind the men in Northern Arizona to stop putting off your prostate cancer screening! While prostate cancer screenings can be intimidating, our experienced urologists are here to make the process as quick and as painless as possible. You can schedule an appointment today with one of our providers to determine if you should be screened for prostate cancer.
Did you know that second to skin cancer, prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men? There are several risk factors associated with prostate cancer, including family history, race, and diet, but the most common factor is age. Prostate cancer is found mainly in older men, and starting around the age of 40, men should start the discussion with their providers to determine if a prostate screening is right for them.
About 1 in 9 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime. Although the number of men with prostate cancer is large, most men diagnosed with this disease do not die from it. According to the CDC, prostate cancer has a 98% 5-year survival rate, meaning that 98% of men are still alive 5 years after being diagnosed. Prostate cancer can be detected early with two different screenings which can often allow for more treatment options.
The two screenings for Prostate Cancer are:
A prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test is a test that measures the level of PSA in the blood. PSA is a substance made mostly by the prostate that may be found in an increased amount in the blood of men who have prostate cancer. The level of PSA may also be high in men who have an infection or inflammation of the prostate or benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH; an enlarged, but noncancerous, prostate).
Digital rectal exam, when a health care provider inserts a gloved, lubricated finger into the lower part of the rectum to feel the prostate for lumps or anything abnormal.
If either of these screenings show abnormalities, a prostate biopsy, or other diagnostic testing may be needed to determine if prostate cancer is present. Our physicians will guide you through every step of treatment and this process. It’s important to discuss all your treatment options, including goals and possible side effects, with your doctor to help make the decision that best fits your needs. To talk to one of our experienced urologists or to schedule your prostate cancer screening call our office at 928-773-2222.