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Prostate Cancer

How to Diagnose Symptoms of Prostate Cancer

Many medical experts consider prostate cancer as a silent killer because usually symptoms of prostate cancer do not surface until it has spread. During early stages, most prostate cancer is a slow-growing tumor and thus some people do not experience any symptom or problem from it. However, some aggressive tumors do provide symptoms of prostate cancer like backaches and pelvis or hip pains caused by cancer cells that have spread to the bones.

When the prostate cancer develops in stages, it enlarges and affects other organs. During these stages, usually the doctor will be able to recognize the different symptoms of prostate cancer, which normally are related with urination problems. Several common symptoms of prostate cancer when it has reached advanced stages are pain during ejaculation, difficulty to urinate, experience dribbling after urination, blood in urine, weight loss, frequent urination while sleeping, and a weak flow of urine.

Most symptoms of prostate cancer are similar as other problems of the prostate. Therefore, it is best to get medical examination to determine the true problem. People who find out about symptoms of prostate cancer at an early stage usually are the ones who took a digital rectal examination, prostate specific antigen (PSA) test, and other laboratory tests to check the health of the prostate.

Tests to diagnose prostate cancer

If you feel that you are at risk of prostate cancer, then it is important for you to get prostate tests to determine whether it is true or not. There are two types of test, the first is to determine whether you have a prostate cancer or not and the second is to find out the stage of the prostate tumor. Prostate specific antigen (PSA) test and digital rectal exam (DRE) are two common tests to detect prostate cancer. Alternatively, transrectal ultrasound and prostate biopsy are used to determine the stage of the prostate cancer.

A PSA test works by analyzing the blood sample to find out the level of prostate specific antigen, a substance that is produced by the prostate gland. If you have high level of PSA, it may indicate the presence of prostate disease, such as enlarged prostate, infection, or cancer. A DRE is used to determine whether there is a tumor in your prostate or not. The prostate gland is located in front of the rectum and in order to check for abnormalities or hard areas in the prostate, the doctor will insert a gloved, lubricated finger into your rectum.

Obviously it is not wise to wait for symptoms of prostate cancer to appear. Therefore, it is important to take a PSA or DRE test once a year to ensure that your prostate stays healthy. This recommendation is especially essential for people who have high risks of prostate cancer.

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