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Prostate Cancer Screenings

Prostate cancer is one of the most common cancers in the U.S. More than 161,000 people will diagnosed with prostate cancer each year. Regular prostate cancer screenings at Planned Parenthood can catch any possible problems early. Early detection saves lives.

What is early detection important?

The earlier prostate cancer is found, the easier it is to treat because the cancer hasn't spread past the prostate. When caught and treated early, prostate cancer has a cure rate of over 90%.

Talk to someone at Planned Parenthood about prostate cancer screenings and your individual risks and needs.

What should I expect during my visit?

Your prostate cancer screening will be done with two tests: the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test and the digital rectal exam (DRE).

Prostate-Specific Antigen blood test:
When you come in to Planned Parenthood for the PSA blood test, your health care professional will take a blood sample to send to the lab. There, your blood will be tested for prostate-specific antigen (PSAs) levels. High PSA levels are associated with prostate cancer, so the PSA blood test is a good first step for screening.

Digital Rectal Exam: 
Your health care professional will feel your prostate for hard lumps that might be cancer. To do this, he or she will insert a gloved and lubricated finger into the rectum. This may sound uncomfortable, but it is a quick, not painful, and important part of prostate cancer screening.

Who is at risk for prostate cancer?

The American Cancer Society recommends that men should talk to their doctor about prostate cancer screenings:

  • At age 40 for men at extremely high risk. Extremely high risk means those with more than one first-degree relative (father, brother, son) with prostate cancer at an early age (younger than 65)
  • At age 45 for men at high risk. High risk means African Americans and men who have a first-degree relative diagnosed with prostate cancer at an early age.
  • At age 50 for everyone at average risk.
How often should I get a prostate cancer screening?

The American Cancer Society recommends regular prostate cancer screenings:

  • Every two years for men with a PSA (prostate-specific antigen) level of less than 2.5 ng/ml
  • Every year for men whose PSA level is 2.5 ng/ml or higher
What should I do if I think I have a high risk for prostate cancer?

Make an appointment with us! We'll be happy to answer any questions you may have and discuss your individual needs.