Prostate cancer affects 1 in 8 men and is the most common cancer affecting men in the UK. Did you know:
- Over 45,000 men are diagnosed each year
- 250,000 UK males are currently living with the disease
- African Caribbean men are 3 times more likely than white men to develop prostate cancer.
- Prostate cancers can be fast or slow growing, slow is more common and may not cause any symptoms.
What causes Prostate cancer?
It’s not known exactly what causes prostate cancer but certain factors increase your risk of developing the disease. Prostate cancer mainly affects men over the age of 50 and you are 2.5 times more likely to develop the condition if a close relative (father or brother) has been diagnosed with it.
Your check for prostate cancer
Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) is a protein made by the prostate gland that naturally leaks into the blood stream. Your check involves a simple blood test and the results will be analysed for your PSA levels.
Sometimes a raised PSA level can be a sign of prostate cancer. However, more often it is caused by something less serious such as an inflamed prostate (prostatitis) or an enlargement of the prostate gland that comes on with ageing (benign prostatic hyperplasia, BPH).
In order that you’re fully aware of the benefits and limitations of this test, you are advised to discuss with your health screening specialist whether it’s right for you.
If detected early, there is a very high survival percentage but although prostate cancer strikes as many men as breast cancer does women, it lacks the same level of national awareness and research funding.
How to prepare
You do not need to fast prior to your test but you are advised to wear loose fitting clothing as we will need to take a blood sample. We also recommend you read this guidance about the PSA test to ensure you understand the benefits and limitations of the test.
How much does it cost?
Your check for Prostate cancer costs £49. You should speak to your health advisor on the day of your screening to check whether undertaking the test is right for you.