Who Should Take a PSA Test for Prostate Cancer?

Nov 08, 2022
Who Should Take a PSA Test for Prostate Cancer?
What if detecting prostate cancer was as easy as a blood draw? A PSA test can help you find this scary form of cancer early on while it’s still treatable. Keep reading to find out when you should get a PSA test for prostate cancer.

Prostate cancer is a common form of cancer that we treat with early detection. A PSA test allows our team to find prostate cancer in the early stages. However, not everyone may benefit from a PSA test.

Suppose you’re concerned about your risk for prostate cancer. In that case, the team at Comprehensive Urology has the tools and knowledge to help. Leading our team are five urology specialists who have years of experience treating problems related to the prostate.

Our team provides compassionate care and a customized plan if you're at risk for prostate cancer.

The facts on a PSA test

A PSA or prostate-specific antigen test is a screening test our team uses to check males for prostate cancer. The PSA test is a relatively noninvasive blood test. It checks the levels of PSA in your blood.

The tissues in your prostate gland make PSA. It’s made from healthy and cancerous tissues, making it hard to find with this test alone. However, if your examination reveals exceptionally high levels of PSA, you’re more likely to have prostate cancer.

Our team often performs a digital rectal exam with your PSA test. Although our team uses this test to find cancer, elevated PSA levels indicate other non-life-threatening issues with your prostate gland.

Because a high PSA result can be a sign of cancer or other problems, our team recommends a prostate biopsy if your results come back elevated. A biopsy is a better way to find cancer if your results aren’t conclusive from your PSA test.

Do you need a PSA test?

A PSA test is an excellent screening tool to help you find cancer early on. But only some men need a PSA test. Our team uses several factors to determine if a PSA test benefits you. These factors include your:

Age

Prostate cancer is more prevalent in men over the age of 50. Unless you have a significant history of prostate cancer in your family or are exhibiting symptoms, our team doesn’t recommend this test under 50.

Genetics

You’re more likely to get prostate cancer if another relative had it. Our team discusses your family history to determine your risk for prostate cancer. They may recommend a PSA test earlier in life if you’re at significant risk.

Race

Prostate cancer is more prevalent in male African Americans. You must talk to our team about a PSA test to rule out prostate cancer if you’re an African American male.

Symptoms

Our team also recommends a PSA test for your exam if you’re experiencing prostate symptoms. Signs of a prostate problem include blood in your semen, frequent urination, or pelvic pain.

If you already have prostate cancer, our team orders a PSA test to evaluate your treatments and monitor your cancer progress.

Understanding your results

There are a lot of factors that may elevate your PSA level. Unfortunately, no specific number is “normal” for your PSA result.

According to the National Cancer Institute, a level of 0.4 ng/mL or lower was indicative that you didn’t have prostate cancer. However, they discovered that some men had prostate cancer with less than 0.4 ng/mL, and others with higher levels didn’t.

If you undergo a PSA test, you must discuss your results with our team. They know to help you analyze the results to determine if you’re at risk for prostate cancer.

It’s also important to understand that other reasons can elevate your PSA level. For example, vigorous exercise before your test or inflammation in your prostate gland contributes to higher-than-normal levels of PSA in your blood.

Your age and prostate gland size may also increase your levels. If you undergo a PSA test, you must discuss your recent activities or prostate symptoms with our team while they review your results.

If a PSA test would benefit you, don’t hesitate to call our office today at 310-278-8330 to schedule a consultation with our team. You can also book an appointment on our website.

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