02 March 2020
It doesn’t hurt, takes just a few minutes and could save your life.
Men over 50 are being urged to take the test as soon as possible in an effort to cut the number of lives a year lost to prostate cancer.
As part of Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, which runs throughout March, Spire Consultant Urologist Surgeon Mr Shabi Ahmad wants to see a big rise in the number of men visiting their GP for an examination that could save their life.
He explained: “There isn’t any point skirting around the subject, the most common test usually involves a ‘digital examination’. It is common practice for the doctor, usually takes less than a minute, is relatively painless and can save your life – so what are you waiting for!”
The causes of prostate cancer are largely unknown but what is certain is that chances of developing it increase in men over 50 years of age. Although it is more common in men of African-Caribbean or African descent, it is actually less common in men of Asian descent.
Men whose father or brother have been affected by prostate cancer are also at higher risk of being affected themselves.
Consultant Urologist Surgeon Mr Shabi Ahmad
Mr Ahmad explained: “A blood test known as a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test can be the first step to checking for cancer but this can only supply an ‘indicator’ and the truth is a digital examination will most likely be needed afterwards.
“The problem with the PSA test is that levels can be raised by non-cancerous growths or urinary infections of the prostate. But it is better to be safe than sorry and, if necessary, a follow-up digital examination will then allow doctors to be much more exact in their diagnosis.
“The good news is that if spotted in time, prostate cancer is very treatable with latest figures showing that 84% of those treated* live for 10 years or more after treatment.”
Prostate cancer facts
- Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men
- Over 44,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer every year – that's more than 120 men every day
- Every hour one man dies from prostate cancer – that's more than 10,500 men every year
- 1 in 8 men will get prostate cancer in their lifetime
- Over 330,000 men are living with and after prostate cancer
Spire Healthcare offers cancer screening tests, find your nearest Spire hospital and book a consultation online.
*Source: Cancer Research UK