[Chat] Prostate cancer screening

Stephen J Gewirtz gewirtz at bellatlantic.net
Wed Jun 8 08:24:46 EDT 2005

I see in today's Sun that free screening for prostate cancer is 
available tomorrow and Friday.  Prostate cancer in men is now as common 
as breast cancer is in women.  I assume that what is offered is a PSA 
(prostate specific antigen) blood test and a digital rectal exam (the 
physician will cover his finger with a latex glove that has vaseline on 
it, and he will stick his finger in your rear end to feel your prostate 
to see if it is abnormally enlarged).  The DRE is not pleasant, but it 
is necessary to detect prostate cancer.

As a survivor of prostate cancer who was treated at the Johns Hopkins 
Kimmel Cancer Center, I urge all men over 40 in the neighborhood who 
have not been screened within the last year by their own physicians to 
take advantage of this opportunity.  My cancer was caught by my 
internist in my annual physical.

Prostate cancer is very treatable if detected early, and you can live 
for a long time after treatment.  In many cases, if the cancer is 
sufficiently non-aggressive, it need only be watched until and unless it 
turns aggressive.  But if it is more aggressive (as mine was), it needs 
to be treated by radiation or by surgery.  I was told that I could 
probably go about 10 years without problems if it was not treated; since 
I expect to be around for a lot longer than 10 more years, I got 
radiation treatment.

If the screening does show the likelihood of prostate cancer, you will 
need a biopsy to determine whether the cancer is actually present and if 
so, in how aggressive a form it is present.  From that point, you can 
see about treatment.


> <http://www.baltimoresun.com/>
> http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/health/bal-md.short08jun08,1,3041207.story?coll=bal-local-headlines 
>   Prostate cancer screenings available
> June 8, 2005
> Doctors are offering free screenings for prostate cancer from 9 a.m. 
> to 5 p.m. tomorrow and Friday in a mobile lab outside the Safeway at 
> 2401 N. Charles St.
> The "Do it for Dad" drive against prostate cancer is sponsored by the 
> Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center, the National Prostate Cancer 
> Coalition and the Family Health Center of Baltimore.
> Doctors will conduct the two-part testing inside a 39-foot-long 
> Airstream Land Yacht XL. It will include a blood test and a physical 
> exam. Maryland ranks 10th in the nation in incidence of prostate 
> cancer and in mortality.
> Copyright © 2005, The Baltimore Sun <http://www.baltimoresun.com>

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