1. Q: How can a person tell if the prostate gland is healthy or not?
A: The prostate is not healthy if the man is having symptoms or if the PSA is elevated. The symptoms are: urinary frequency, urgency, getting up at night frequently, slow stream, and hesitancy in the starting stream.
2. Q: What is prostate cancer and do other conditions cause symptoms similar to prostate cancer? (Also see the prostate cancer awareness information on website by clicking on the prostate cancer awareness stamp icon on the home page.)
A: Prostate cancer, the most common cancer in men is a malignancy of the prostate gland, a gland which men need for fertility.
The gland is located at the base of the bladder and is involved with the urinary system as well as the transportation of semen outside the body.
Early on, prostate cancer does not cause symptoms. It tends to arise silently, pass through a curable stage silently and then become incurable silently.
But when it does cause symptoms, it usually causes difficulty with urination, a slow urinary stream, having to get up frequently at night , and difficulty in starting the urinary stream.
A number of conditions can cause symptoms identical to prostate cancer. Benign enlargement of the prostate, inflammation in the prostate, and sometimes even a bladder stone can cause similar symptoms. A physician should examine men who have these symptoms and prostate cancer should be ruled out.
3. Q: What can I expect in my doctors office when I go for prostate check-up?
A: For the PSA blood test, blood is drawn from the vein just as with a blood sugar, cholesterol or any other blood test. After that, the doctor does a digital rectal examination, which involves putting a gloved finger in the rectum and feeling the prostate gland for degree of hardness, for any lumps, and for any abnormalities. Some men dread the thought of the examination, but its really not much and it can be a lifesaver.
4. Q: Is it true that all men at some point in their lives will develop prostate cancer?
5. Q: Is frequent ejaculation beneficial to a healthy prostate?
A: No, even though you might often hear that myth. It is true that if the prostate gland were removed and carefully examined under the microscope, up to 80 percent of men in their 80s would have some microscopic traces of prostate cancer, but only about 16% of men are actually diagnosed with prostate cancer during their lifetime. Prostate cancer will be large enough to detect with a biopsy in only 16% of men.
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