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How To Check Your Prostate

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An Abnormal Psa Test: What Comes Next

How to Check Your Prostate

If your PSA score is in the abnormal range, your doctor may recommend yourepeat the PSA test. If your levels are still high, your doctor mightrecommend one of the newer prostate cancer screening tests available today.

These tests can help better assess your risk for prostate cancer anddetermine whether a biopsy is necessary. Only a prostate biopsy candefinitively diagnose prostate cancer.

For individualized recommendations that suit you, ask your doctor about:

  • What age you should start prostate cancer screening
  • New blood, urine and imaging tests that are available
  • Improved biopsy techniques, if applicable

What Research Has Been Done To Study Prostate Cancer Screening

Several randomized clinical trials of prostate cancer screening have been carried out. One of the largest is the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial, which NCI conducted to determine whether certain screening tests can help reduce the numbers of deaths from several common cancers. In the prostate portion of the trial, the PSA test and DRE were evaluated for their ability to decrease a mans chances of dying from prostate cancer.

The PLCO investigators found that men who underwent annual prostate cancer screening had a higher incidence of prostate cancer than men in the control group but the same rate of deaths from the disease . Overall, the results suggest that many men were treated for prostate cancers that would not have been detected in their lifetime without screening. Consequently, these men were exposed unnecessarily to the potential harms of treatment.

A second large trial, the European Randomized Study of Screening for Prostate Cancer , compared prostate cancer deaths in men randomly assigned to PSA-based screening or no screening. As in the PLCO, men in ERSPC who were screened for prostate cancer had a higher incidence of the disease than control men. In contrast to the PLCO, however, men who were screened had a lower rate of death from prostate cancer .

The Role Of Psa In Choosing The Best Treatment

If you have received a diagnosis of prostate cancer, your PSA levels can be used along with the results of other tests and physical exams and your tumors Gleason score to help determine which tests are needed for further evaluation and to decide on the best treatment plan. After treatment has begun, your PSA and other tests will be used to determine how well the treatment is working: The more successful the therapy, the lower the PSA.

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Are There Any Risks And Side Effects To Prostate Massages

The anal mucosa and the anus itself are very sensitive,” Hong explains. Although the anus is built to stretch to a certain extent, it doesnt self-lubricate, meaning without proper precautions anal stimulation can cause pain and tearing . This means that its super important for everyone involved to prepare for giving and receiving a prostate massage . Its also worth mentioning that this might feel a bit uncomfortable at first. As SELF previously reported, making sure youre getting in sufficient amounts of foreplay is a big part of lowering the odds that youll deal with things like pain and tearing.

Okay Exactly What And Where Is The Prostate

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The prostate is a walnut-size gland nestled deep inside the male pelvis, and it helps produce semen and nourish it with important substances, Hong, M.D., a urologist in Phoenix, tells SELF. Cisgender women dont have prostates. But for the folks who do have them, the prostate is made up of tissue known as stroma, secretory glands that produce semen ingredients, and muscle fibers. Its located right in front of the bladderthe ducts in the prostate gland actually flow into the urethra, which is why prostate issues can affect urinary function. For example, if someone has an enlarged prostate , they might find that they have a more frequent urge to pee, among other symptoms, the Mayo Clinic explains.

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How To Stimulate Prostate For Maximum Pleasure

There are a number of ways to achieve the goal. Here is how you should proceed for maximum effects.

Step 1: Prepare the Things That You Need

You need to pay attention to certain things before you even think of stimulating your prostate internally or externally. If you are have someone massaging it for you, then he/she should make the preparations. For instance:

  • You should trim your nails and use a filer to get rid of any sharp edges. You will be using your finger to learn how to stimulate prostate and sharp nails can hurt your sensitive tissues.
  • You should wash your hands thoroughly using an antiseptic solution to reduce the chances of infection.
  • You should get a good quality lube and lubricate your hand properly. You may even consider lubricating the anus.
  • You should spend some time massaging your perineum and anus from the outside before taking it to the next step.

Step 2: Prepare your Body and Sexual Organs

You need to understand that rushing through things may lead to complications. You need to be patient and always start with an external massage. The perineum, the area located between the anus sand the scrotum, should be massaged lighting from the outside. Even though you dont feel your prostate when massaging the perineum, youre still giving a massage to your prostate in an indirect way. Maintain a rhythmic, circular motion when massaging the anus it is fine to gently push on your anus without inserting your finger in for now.

Step 3: Find the Prostate

Self Prostate Exam: Hot Water With Hip Bath For 5 Days

How to avoid the detour on the diagnosis of the disease? Experts recommend a simple self prostate exam which is:

If you find yourself may have at least one of the above three types of symptoms, patients can use hip bath with hot water daily for 1-2 times, each time 20 minutes. The water temperature should always remain at 50 Celsius degrees, and receive the treatment continuously for 5 days. If the symptoms reduce or disappear, the patient is likely to be suffering from chronic prostatitis. This self prostate exam is simple with no toxic side effects and helpful for the diagnosis and treatment.

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If Screening Test Results Arent Normal

If you are screened for prostate cancer and your initial blood PSA level is higher than normal, it doesnt always mean that you have prostate cancer. Many men with higher than normal PSA levels do not have cancer. Still, further testing will be needed to help find out what is going on. Your doctor may advise one of these options:

  • Waiting a while and having a second PSA test
  • Getting another type of test to get a better idea of if you might have cancer
  • Getting a prostate biopsy to find out if you have cancer

Its important to discuss your options, including their possible pros and cons, with your doctor to help you choose one you are comfortable with. Factors that might affect which option is best for you include:

  • Your age and overall health
  • The likelihood that you have prostate cancer
  • Your own comfort level with waiting or getting further tests

If your initial PSA test was ordered by your primary care provider, you may be referred to a urologist for this discussion or for further testing.

What Happens After The Prostate Tests

How to check your prostate at home

Urodynamic tests and cystoscopy may cause mild discomfort for a few hours after the procedures. Drinking an 8-ounce glass of water every half-hour for 2 hours may help reduce discomfort. The health care provider may recommend taking a warm bath or holding a warm, damp washcloth over the urethral opening to relieve discomfort. A prostate biopsy may produce pain in the area of the rectum and the perineum, which is between the rectum and the scrotum. A prostate biopsy may also produce blood in urine and semen.

An antibiotic may be prescribed for 1 or 2 days to prevent infection.

Patients with signs of infectionincluding pain, chills, or fevershould call their health care provider immediately.

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What Do The Results Mean

PSA levels may be above the baseline for various reasons other than prostate cancer.

Other factors that can raise PSA levels include:

  • older age
  • an enlarged prostate â because of benign prostatic hyperplasia , for example
  • prostatitis, which is inflammation and swelling of the prostate

Also, people with obesity may have lower PSA readings.

In addition, some medications may reduce PSA levels, including:

  • 5-alpha reductase inhibitors, which can help treat BPH
  • aspirin, which some people take regularly as a blood thinner
  • statins, which help manage cholesterol levels
  • thiazide diuretics, a kind of water pill that can help reduce high blood pressure

Some herbal medicines and supplements can also lower PSA levels. Tell the doctor about any medications and supplements before undergoing the test.

High PSA levels alone do not indicate cancer. However, if a DRE also reveals changes, a doctor may recommend a biopsy for a more accurate result.

The PCA3 is another test for prostate cancer that doctors use in some circumstances. Find out more.

How Is Prostate Cancer Treated

For many men with prostate cancer, treatment is not immediately necessary.

If the cancer is at an early stage and not causing symptoms, your doctor may suggest either watchful waiting or active surveillance.

The best option depends on your age and overall health. Both options involve carefully monitoring your condition.

Some cases of prostate cancer can be cured if treated in the early stages.

Treatments include:

  • either on its own or alongside hormone therapy

Some cases are only diagnosed at a later stage, when the cancer has spread.

If the cancer spreads to other parts of the body and cannot be cured, treatment is focused on prolonging life and relieving symptoms.

All treatment options carry the risk of significant side effects, including erectile dysfunction and urinary symptoms, such as needing to use the toilet more urgently or more often.

For this reason, some men choose to delay treatment until theres a risk the cancer might spread.

Newer treatments, such as high-intensity focused ultrasound and cryotherapy, aim to reduce these side effects.

Some hospitals may offer them as an alternative to surgery, radiotherapy or hormone therapy.

But the long-term effectiveness of these treatments is not known yet.

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Who Should Get A Prostate Exam

Starting at age 50, all men should discuss prostate cancer screening with their doctor. The American Cancer Society advises men at higher risk to have this conversation at age 45.

Youre considered to have an increased risk if youre African-American or if a first-degree relative had prostate cancer before age 65. If more than one first-degree relative had prostate cancer before age 65, you might want to consider beginning prostate cancer screening even earlier.

The ACS estimates there will be about new cases of prostate cancer in the United States in 2016. About men will die from it.

Prostate cancer is easier to treat before it spreads. However, some prostate cancers are so slow-growing that they dont always require treatment. A lot depends on your age and other factors.

Discuss your risk factors with your doctor, and ask if you should have a prostate exam as part of your yearly checkup.

What Is A Normal Psa Test Result

How to Check Your Prostate: When to Begin &  What to Expect

There is no specific normal or abnormal level of PSA in the blood, and levels may vary over time in the same man. In the past, most doctors considered PSA levels of 4.0 ng/mL and lower as normal. Therefore, if a man had a PSA level above 4.0 ng/mL, doctors would often recommend a prostate biopsy to determine whether prostate cancer was present.

However, more recent studies have shown that some men with PSA levels below 4.0 ng/mL have prostate cancer and that many men with higher levels do not have prostate cancer . In addition, various factors can cause a mans PSA level to fluctuate. For example, a mans PSA level often rises if he has prostatitis or a urinary tract infection. Prostate biopsies and prostate surgery also increase PSA level. Conversely, some drugsincluding finasteride and dutasteride , which are used to treat BPHlower a mans PSA level. PSA level may also vary somewhat across testing laboratories.

Another complicating factor is that studies to establish the normal range of PSA levels have been conducted primarily in populations of White men. Although expert opinions vary, there is no clear consensus regarding the optimal PSA threshold for recommending a prostate biopsy for men of any racial or ethnic group.

In general, however, the higher a mans PSA level, the more likely it is that he has prostate cancer. Moreover, a continuous rise in a mans PSA level over time may also be a sign of prostate cancer.

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Cystoscopy Procedure For Your Prostate

The urologist may insert a camera catheter, also known as a cystoscopy procedure, to do a prostate examination if they suspect a serious problem.

Also known as a bladder scope, the camera allows the doctor to see the inside of the prostate and bladder. An enlarged prostate can cause problems in the bladder, and a cystoscopy procedure can enable your doctor to see whats going on inside your prostate and bladder.

This procedure enters not through the rear as in a normal DRE but the front down the penis inside the urethra through the prostate gland and into the bladder.

The cystoscope has lenses that allow your doctor to see inside the prostate, bladder and urinary tract. The images usually appear on a computer screen as she guides the scope.

The cystoscope has lenses that allow your doctor to see inside the prostate, bladder and urinary tract. The images usually appear on a computer screen as she guides the scope.

Cystoscopes come in different sizes: from the thickness of a pencil, to approximately 9mm and have a light at the tip. Many cystoscopes have extra tubes to guide other instruments for surgical procedures to treat urinary problems.

Yup, this one can hurt especially if done fast, as my urologist did! The catheter and camera size are not small. They did use a local anesthetic gel, xylocaine, but it did not make much difference to me.

This will ease with each urination. Some blood spotting is also possible but this too will pass.

What Is The First Test For Detecting Prostate Problems

The first test for detecting prostate problems is a blood test to measure prostate-specific antigen , a protein made only by the prostate gland. This test is often included in routine physical exams for men older than age 50. Because African American men have higher rates of getting, and dying from, prostate cancer than men of other racial or ethnic groups in the United States, medical organizations recommend a PSA blood test be given starting at age 40 for African American men. Medical organizations also recommend a PSA blood test be given starting at age 40 for men with a family history of prostate cancer. Some medical organizations even recommend a PSA blood test be given to all men starting at age 40.

If urination problems are present or if a PSA blood test indicates a problem, additional tests may be ordered. These tests may require a patient to change his diet or fluid intake or to stop taking medications. If the tests involve inserting instruments into the urethra or rectum, antibiotics may be given before and after the test to prevent infection.

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What Happens During A Digital Rectal Exam

Your health care provider will insert a gloved finger into the rectum and feel the prostate for hard, lumpy, or abnormal areas. The test takes only a few minutes to complete.

You may feel slight, momentary discomfort during the test. The procedure does not cause significant pain or any damage to the prostate.

Transrectal Ultrasound With Prostate Biopsy

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Transrectal ultrasound is most often used to examine the prostate. In a transrectal ultrasound, the health care provider inserts a transducer slightly larger than a pen into the mans rectum next to the prostate. The ultrasound image shows the size of the prostate and any abnormal-looking areas, such as tumors. Transrectal ultrasound cannot definitively identify prostate cancer.

To determine whether a tumor is cancerous, the health care provider uses the transducer and ultrasound images to guide a needle to the tumor. The needle is then used to remove a few pieces of prostate tissue for examination with a microscope. This process, called biopsy, can reveal whether prostate cancer is present. A transrectal ultrasound with prostate biopsy is usually performed by a doctor in a health care providers office, outpatient center, or hospital with light sedation and local anesthesia. The biopsied prostate tissue is examined in a laboratory by a pathologista doctor who specializes in diagnosing diseases.

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What Is The Psa Test

Prostate-specific antigen, or PSA, is a protein produced by normal, as well as malignant, cells of the prostate gland. The PSA test measures the level of PSA in a mans blood. For this test, a blood sample is sent to a laboratory for analysis. The results are usually reported as nanograms of PSA per milliliter of blood.

The blood level of PSA is often elevated in men with prostate cancer, and the PSA test was originally approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in 1986 to monitor the progression of prostate cancer in men who had already been diagnosed with the disease. In 1994, FDA approved the use of the PSA test in conjunction with a digital rectal exam to test asymptomatic men for prostate cancer. Men who report prostate symptoms often undergo PSA testing to help doctors determine the nature of the problem.

In addition to prostate cancer, a number of benign conditions can cause a mans PSA level to rise. The most frequent benign prostate conditions that cause an elevation in PSA level are prostatitis and benign prostatic hyperplasia . There is no evidence that prostatitis or BPH leads to prostate cancer, but it is possible for a man to have one or both of these conditions and to develop prostate cancer as well.

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