It’s a new year and everyone wants to start off the right way – engaging in healthier habits and accomplishing those goals that have long been on our lists. For many, the new year represents a time to get a clean slate with regard to health and that starts with an overall physical to assess general health. Of course, depending on our age and gender, what is included in that physical will be varied. And for men, that means ensuring prostate health.
Prostate cancer is a very common diagnosis and a type of cancer that is easily treated for many men. In fact, many men can have prostate cancer and not be affected by it ever in their lifetime. Screening is easy and begins with a digital rectal exam that can be done right in the doctor’s office – something that takes just a few minutes and can bring significant peace of mind.
During a digital rectal exam, the doctor inserts a gloved finger into the rectum. Through the rectum wall the doctor can feel the prostate and therefore be able to assess if there are any hard areas or lumps that are cause for concern. If the examination reveals that there is anything that should be investigated further, your doctor may order further tests. In most cases, all is well and there is no need for any treatment. But in the case of a prostate cancer that needs to be addressed, having this regular screening allows for early diagnosis and the opportunity to implement a treatment plan as quickly as possible for the most effective results.
Just as you will take the time to have blood work to check your cholesterol, an exam to check your blood pressure, a regular eye exam, a thorough examination by a dermatologist, and more, for men it’s important to take the time to have your prostate checked to ensure ongoing health.