In addition to a digital rectal examination, or an examination of the prostate, another tool that has been used to assess for the condition or state of health of the prostate is a blood test called the PSA. PSA stands for Prostatic Specific Antigen. This is a protein that is produced by the prostate that has a specific reproductive function. The protein, however, can also be picked up in the blood stream.
This test has been utilized for a number of years to follow patients with prostate cancer. It has also been used to screen or to look for patients with prostate cancer who may not have symptoms or may not have any findings suspicious for prostate cancer on digital rectal examination. PSA Screening is a Controversial Topic. I have provided some links, or Permamarks, to help you understand the issues regarding PSA screening. I will be glad to talk to you about the topic when I see you in the office at the time of your office visit.
For additional information on PSA and PSA Screening, please review the following List of Permamarks.