PSA Testing Conducted & Supported by The Graham Fulford Charitable Trust

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PSA levels

A normal PSA level

If your PSA level is not raised, you are unlikely to have cancer. No immediate action is needed, although you may have further PSA tests in the future. However, the PSA test doesn’t always pick up prostate cancer.

A slightly raised PSA level

Two out of three men with a raised PSA level will not have prostate cancer. If your PSA level is slightly higher than normal, you probably don’t have cancer but you might need further tests, including more PSA tests.

A raised PSA level

One out of three men with a raised PSA level will have cancer. The higher the level of PSA, the more likely it is to be a sign of cancer. If your PSA level is definitely raised, your GP will arrange for you to see a specialist for further tests to find out if you have prostate cancer.

A PSA test alone cannot tell you whether you have prostate cancer. If the test shows your PSA levels are raised, your doctor may suggest you have a digital rectal examination (DRE). This is an examination of the prostate gland, during which a doctor will insert a gloved finger into your rectum.

No screening

As there is currently no prostate cancer screening programme on the NHS The Graham Fulford Charitable Trust was set up to provide a level of support for men who would otherwise not have been aware of the risks of Prostate Cancer.

The DRE checks for signs of prostate cancer, such as the prostate gland feeling hard. However, a gland that feels normal does not necessarily mean you don't have cancer.

Many early cancers may not be detected by a DRE. Therefore, a DRE is not recommended as a substitute for the PSA test.

Your doctor will also consider your age, any family history of prostate cancer, your ethnic background and any previous PSA test results.

In some cases, extra PSA tests may help make the situation clearer or show any changes.

Source: NHS Choices
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