Prostate Cancer Screening
Should I Get Screened for Prostate Cancer?
Not all medical experts agree that screening for prostate cancer will save lives. Currently, there is not enough evidence to decide if the potential benefits of prostate cancer screening outweigh the potential risks.
Potential benefits of prostate cancer screening include --
- Screening can detect cancers early.
- Treatment for prostate cancer may be more effective when it is found early.
Potential risks of prostate cancer screening include --
- False positive test results (indicating that you have prostate cancer when in fact you do not) that lead to further tests and can cause anxiety.
- Treatment of some prostate cancers that may have never affected a man's health even if left untreated.
- Treatment may lead to serious side effects such as impotence (inability to keep an erection) and incontinence (inability to control the flow of urine, resulting in leakage).
CDC and other federal agencies follow the prostate cancer screening guidelines set forth by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, which state that there is insufficient evidence to recommend for or against routine screening for prostate cancer using PSA or DRE.