Prostate cancer / PSA screening
There is currently no screening programme for prostate cancer in the UK. This is because it has not been proved that the benefits would outweigh the risks.
A PSA test cannot identify prostate cancer on its own, and changes in PSA levels alone are not a good reason to start treatment. Whether this is right for you needs to be discussed at first with a GP so you understand what the results might mean.
PSA tests are unreliable and can suggest prostate cancer when no cancer exists (a false-positive result). This means that many men often have invasive and sometimes painful treatment which can then lead to complications from their treatment such as infections, sexual dysfunctions and bladder and bowel control problems.
More research is needed to determine whether a screening programme would provide men with more benefit than harm.
If you are experiencing symptoms you may believe are related to prostate cancer, please make an appointment to see your GP.
More information can be found at NHS Choices.
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(Site updated 14/03/2018)