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Are Prostate Cancer Screening Exams Really Necessary?

You diet, exercise, maintain a healthy weight and are in overall great physical condition. You also happen to be a middle age male whose doctor has recommended routine prostate examinations.

Is this really necessary?

The simple truth – like it or not – is that this measure is veryneeded. This is especially so if you’re over the age of 40.

Prostate cancer strikes about 1 in 7 American males in their lifetimes. An estimated 220,800 men are diagnosed with this disease annually each and every year. Add to this the fact that risk factors include items that men simply cannot control by diet and exercise alone – such as family history, ethnicity and geography – and it all adds up to good reasons to submit to annual exams.

Why Exams Matter

Annual prostate exams are generally not the most pleasant of experiences for men, but they are important. Prostate cancer is one of the forms of this disease that tends to be very slow growing and also fairly simple to treat when it is caught in its early stages. When men go in for routine exams, they simply increase their chances this disease will be caught before it becomes fatal. It also can help ensure that more options for treatment exist if cancer is detected.

What to Expect

Routine prostate exams generally involve nothing more than a quick rectal exam to check the health of the prostate along with a simple blood test. These two screening procedures can tell a doctor if more in-depth testing is required to detect or rule out cancer. All in all, a routine exam doesn’t take long and it can be a real lifesaver.

Prostate exams might seem unnecessary, but they can deliver lifesaving results if the disease is detected. If your doctor has told you it’s time to start these exams, it can pay to heed this sound advice.