What Is It Used For
A PSA test is used to screen for prostate cancer. Screening is a test that looks for a disease, such as cancer, in its early stages, when itâs most treatable. Leading health organizations, such as the American Cancer Society and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , disagree on recommendations for using the PSA test for cancer screening. Reasons for disagreement include:
- Most types of prostate cancer grow very slowly. It can take decades before any symptoms show up.
- Treatment of slow-growing prostate cancer is often unnecessary. Many men with the disease live long, healthy lives without ever knowing they had cancer.
- Treatment can cause major side effects, including erectile dysfunction and urinary incontinence.
- Fast-growing prostate cancer is less common, but more serious and often life-threatening. Age, family history, and other factors can put you at higher risk. But the PSA test alone canât tell the difference between slow- and fast-growing prostate cancer.
To find out if PSA testing is right for you, talk to your health care provider.
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Mayo Clinic Q And A: Prostate Biopsies And Elevated Psa
DEAR MAYO CLINIC: I recently had a physical, which included a check of my PSA level. The doctor said my PSA level is elevated, as it has been in the past. I have undergone several biopsies that have not shown cancer. Do I need to continue with biopsies every year?
ANSWER: It may not be necessary for you to continue with annual prostate biopsies. But that depends in part on the overall level and rate of change of your prostate-specific antigen, or PSA, over time. Along with information about your PSA, your health care provider can use several other tools to determine if you need additional biopsies or if you can be monitored safely without further biopsies.
The PSA test measures the amount of prostate-specific antigen in your blood. PSA is a protein produced by both cancerous and noncancerous tissue in the prostate a small gland that sits below a mans bladder.
When PSA is found to be above normal levels, a prostate biopsy may be recommended to check for cancer. Biopsies involve using a needle to collect several tissue samples from the prostate gland. Then the samples are examined in a lab to see if they contain cancer.
Although the PSA test is used primarily to screen for prostate cancer, other medical conditions can cause PSA levels to rise, as well. One of the most common is benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH. Basically, this condition is enlargement of the prostate gland that doesnt involve cancer. Benign prostatic hyperplasia is common as men get older.
Treatment For Benign Prostate Hyperplasia
Treatment for benign prostate hyperplasia can involve:
- Lifestyle changes, such as limiting a night-time consumption of liquids, avoiding caffeine and alcohol, avoiding medication such as diuretics, decongestants and antihistamines and getting more exercise, as well as dietary improvements, such as eating more fibre, avoiding artificial sweeteners and sweetened beverages.
- Medication, such as alpha-blockers or 5-alpha-reductase inhibitors.
- Interventions, such as the UroliftÂ® system, a non-surgical proprietary device that uses tiny implants to lift the prostate away from the urethra and thereby relieve BPH symptoms that result from pressure on the urethra.
- Surgical procedures, such as a prostatectomy , transurethral microwave thermotherapy , prostate laser, and Transurethral Resection of the Prostate .
- Herbal prostate treatments, such as saw palmetto extract. Saw palmetto extract is made from the fruit of the saw palmetto, which is native to the southeast and Gulf coasts of North America and may potentially assist in reducing urinary frequency and increasing urinary flow.
Treatment of prostate cancer can involve:
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Constipation From Enlarged Prostate
Doxylamine succinate is an antihistamine medication that blocks the effects of histamine, a chemical occurring naturally in the body 4. Doxylamine succinate is found in some over-the-counter sleep aids, such as Unisom and Wal-Som 4.It is also combined with decongestants and other medicines in a number of over-the-counter cold or allergy medicines, such as NyQuil and Tylenol Sinus.
Like all medicines, tamsulosin can cause side effects, but many people have no side effects or only minor ones. Side effects often improve as your body gets used to the medicine. Common side effects. These common side effects happen in more than 1 in 100 people. They’re usually mild and short-lived.
Constipation can affect your pelvic floor muscles. Pelvic floor muscle strength is important for both bladder and bowel control. These muscles stretch like a trampoline from the pubic bone at the front to the coccyx at the back. They can be weakened by straining due to constipation, pregnancy and childbirth, or perhaps heavy lifting.
About your prostate surgery. A radical prostatectomy is a surgery to remove your entire prostate gland and seminal vesicles. Some of the lymph nodes in your pelvis are removed as well. This is done to prevent cancer from spreading from your prostate to other parts of your body. A radical prostatectomy can be done in 1 of 2 ways.
Causes Of An Elevated Psa Level
Prostate cancer typically leads to an elevated PSA level. Given that early-stage prostate cancer is generally limited to asymptomatic malignant changes at the cellular level, men have no way of knowing that something is wrong. This is why prostate cancer screening in the form of PSA testing is the best method of early detection. Please refer to the PSA Table for help in interpreting your PSA scores.
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What Should You Know About Psa Levels
Under normal circumstances, the serum secretions of PSA should stay under 4 nanograms per milliliter . People who have prostate malignancy usually have high PSA levels, but low or normal PSA doesnt always mean that the person is cancer-free. A smaller number of men with prostate cancer have low or normal PSA levels. This suggests that PSA test by itself is not a confirmatory test but can help in identifying who might be at risk of developing the cancer or has developed the malignancy.
Usually PSA test is preceded or coupled by DRE , in which the examiner inserts the finger in patients rectum to check for the consistency or edges of prostate gland. At risk patients with abnormal findings on the DRE and high PSA levels are subjected to biopsy to ascertain the cause and confirm the diagnosis. It is imperative to mention that False-Positives are common.
High PSA Levels without Prostate Cancer:
Testing errors such as mishandling of sample, measuring inconsistency, lifestyle choices and overall physical health can alter with PSA levels. Following are some physiological causes of high PSA levels.
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Diagnosis And Treatment Of Female Prostate Cancer
Due to the challenges of diagnosis, the signs of female prostate cancer are often mistakenly attributed to underlying conditions in the urinary tract or reproductive system.
Unfortunately, the initial stage of cancer in the Skene glands is asymptomatic. Once your menstrual cycle is disrupted, sex becomes painful, or youre always feeling sick, the disease is quite advanced.
Treatment of female prostate cancer follows a similar strategy to that of other reproductive cancers. If chemical and radiation therapies arent successful in eradicating tumors, then surgery will likely be required to excise them. Frequently, the surgical removal of larger tumors and the chemical destruction of smaller tumors happen simultaneously.
In more severe cases, the organ or organs containing the cancerous growths must be removed as well. This could include your Skene glands, uterus, ovaries, or your entire reproductive system . Whenever cancer in the Skene glands goes undiagnosed and untreated, bladder cancer may follow.
Medical experts have theorized that female prostate cancer could be linked to a history of sexually transmitted infections. The Skene glands, like the male prostate, act as guardians against infections that travel throughout the reproductive system.
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Using Palliative Care To Ease Discomfort
For both urinary and bowel incontinence that is caused by compression of nerves in the spinal cord as a result of prostate cancer that has spread to the spine or bones, palliative treatments for metastasized cancer may be of use. These treatments include radiotherapy, medication, or surgical removal of spinal cord tumors. However, these treatment options are not indicated for every situation. Your doctor will help you determine what path is right for you and to improve your quality of life. As always, coping with quality of life symptoms like these can take a toll on an individual or their caretaker both mentally and physically. For this reason, it can be a good idea to consult a therapist or counselor if needed for extra support.
How Common Is Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia
Benign prostatic hyperplasia is the most common prostate problem for men older than age 50. In 2010, as many as 14 million men in the United States had lower urinary tract symptoms suggestive of benign prostatic hyperplasia.1 Although benign prostatic hyperplasia rarely causes symptoms before age 40, the occurrence and symptoms increase with age. Benign prostatic hyperplasia affects about 50 percent of men between the ages of 51 and 60 and up to 90 percent of men older than 80.2
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What Procedures Or Tests Diagnose This Prostate Problem
A doctor or other health care professional usually can detect an enlarged prostate by rectal examination. A medical professionals may perform a rectal examination to ensure that there are no nodules, which are hard, irregular areas in the prostate suspicious for prostate cancer, as well as to assess the size of the prostate. Assessment of prostate size and shape is better assessed with an abdominal or transrectal ultrasound or cystoscopy. A cystoscope is a long, thin telescope-like instrument that has a light source and lens allowing one to look at the urethra, the prostate, and the bladder when inserted through the opening at the tip of the penis. Cystoscopy and/or ultrasound is recommended prior to surgical treatment of BPH. Other tests that medical professionals may perform include: bladder scanner postvoid residual determination and uroflowmetry . Lastly, a PSA is often obtained and if abnormal may require further evaluation to rule out prostate cancer.
The American Urological Association recommends that men with BPH complete the AUA-symptom index , which assesses the degree to which symptoms bother. It is a useful way to assess changes in bothersome symptoms with treatment.
How Can I Tell The Difference Between Prostatitis And Bph
If you do not have any symptoms of BPH or any of the types of prostatitis, which can be the situation for some men, you may not be able to tell if you have either problem. However, a doctor or other health care professional can detect enlargement of the prostate with a digital rectal exam , even if you dont have any symptoms.
If you do have symptoms, they are related to the increase in size of your prostate gland. When the gland enlarges, it can constrict the urethra and produce one or more of these symptoms.
- The need to urinate frequently during the day or night
- The sudden urgent need to urinate
- Difficulty initiating urinary stream
- Feeling like you still need to urinate even though you recently urinated
- Feeling like you need to push or strain to empty your bladder
- A decrease in the force of the urine stream
- Loss of small amounts of urine
The symptoms of prostatitis depend upon the type of prostatitis.
Acute bacterial prostatitis symptoms
Asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis
Some men may have some of these symptoms with both BPH and prostatitis. If you are over age 50, it is more likely BPH than prostatitis, and if you are under age 35, acute bacterial prostatitis is more likely than BPH. In some patients, prostatitis may be recurrent .
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When Should I Call My Doctor
You should call your doctor if:
- You have a fever higher than 100° F or 38° C
- You have pain in your stomach,
- You are unable to pass gas
- You have nausea and/or vomiting with your constipation
- Your stomach looks swollen and/or feels hard when you touch it.
- You have not had a bowel movement in three days after following the directions your doctor has given you to relieve your constipation.
If you have any of these signs talk to your doctor or health care team. There are medicines and treatments that can help you feel better. It is important that you talk to your doctor or health care team about any side effects you may have during or after your treatment. Your health care team can help treat these problems.
Can Prostatitis And Bph Be Cured
The prognosis for BPH for most patients that undergo treatment is good to fair, depending upon how well patients respond. BPH that requires surgery may result in complications such as erectile dysfunction. The prognosis for patients with more severe BPH symptoms that require surgery and medication for symptom relief is fair. There is no cure for BPH.
Most men with prostatitis may have significant symptom relief, and most men can be cured with long-term appropriate antibiotic treatments. The prognosis for prostatitis ranges from good to fair because some patients have a tendency to have recurrent bouts of the condition.
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How May My Constipation Be Treated
Constipation is a common side effect or unwanted change in your body when you have chemotherapy treatment. Constipation can make you feel very uncomfortable. The most important thing for you to remember is to not let your constipation go on for days and days, but to get help right away. If you do not have a bowel movement for two days, you should tell your health care team right away. There are medicines that your doctor or health care team can give to you that will make your constipation better.
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After Discharge To Home From The Hospital
Because of the raw surface around your prostate and the irritating effects of urine, you may expect frequency of urination and/or urgency . This will usually resolve or improve slowly over the healing period. You may see some blood in your urine over the first six weeks. Do not be alarmed, even if the urine was clear for a while. Take it easy and drink lots of fluids until the urine clears again.DIET: You may return to your normal diet immediately. Because of the raw surface alcohol, spicy foods and drinks with caffeine may cause some irritation or frequency and should be used in moderation. To keep your urine flowing freely and to avoid constipation, drink plenty of fluids during the day .ACTIVITY: Your physical activity is to be restricted, especially during the first two weeks. During this time use the following guidelines: a. No lifting heavy objects b. NO strenuous exercise c. NO sexual intercourse for 3 weeks d. No severe straining during bowel movements, make certain to take stool softeners
MEDICATION: You should resume your pre-surgery medication unless told not to. In addition you will often be given an antibiotic to prevent infection and stool softeners. These should be taken as prescribed until the bottles are finished unless you are having an unusual reaction to one of the drugs.
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How Constipation Affects Your Prostate
Last Updated on October 11, 2020 by Max
Constipation is one of the most harmful conditions for your health. As I mentioned earlier, the prostate is located in the vicinity to the rectum, and with age, it may enlarge several times in size, even pressing into the wall of the rectum. When your bowel works correctly, the feces are eliminated in time, and the level of exogenous and endogenous toxins in the feces is low, the wall of the rectum performs its barrier function perfectly even if the content of the bowel had a high level of toxins, their exposure time to the wall of the colon is short.
Now lets try to understand what is happening in your bowel when you are constipated? How constipation affects your prostate? First of all, the balance of healthy gut microbiota may change sulfate- or nitrate reducing bacteria multiply, producing more and more carcinogenic toxins. When the concentration of toxins in your bowel is too high, they begin to leak outside, causing inflammation of the prostate and may lead to prostatitis or even to prostate cancer.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Prostatitis
These are the most common symptoms of prostatitis:
- Need to urinate often
- Burning or stinging while urinating
- Pain when urinating
- Less urine when you urinate
- Rectal pain or pressure
- Fever and chills
- Pain in your lower back or pelvis
- Discharge through the urethra during bowel movements
- Erectile dysfunction or loss of sex drive
- Throbbing sensations in the rectal or genital area
The symptoms of prostatitis may look like other medical conditions or problems. Always see your healthcare provider for a diagnosis.