A BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO PROSTATE CANCER
Basic Answers to Commonly Asked Questions About Prostate Cancer
Free PSA Test
Simple Blood Test
Many cases are found by using the simple blood test for Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA). PSA leaks from the normal prostate cells in small amounts, but an elevated rate of leakage may indicate the presence of prostate cancer cells.
PSA readings of up to 2.5 ng/ml (nanograms per milliliter) are considered normal for a person in his forties. As men grow older, an increase in PSA is normal. Thus, a reading of 3.9 for a 70 year old would be considered normal. (African-Americans should lower these readings by about 0.5). High PSA often indicates the disease is outside the prostate capsule.
If the PSA is abnormally high and the doctor feels something in the gland, a biopsy is usually performed. PSA is also used after therapy as a monitor to indicate therapy failure and if PC is under control.
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