Medical Q&As

Prostate screening

What does a prostate screening examination entail?

Prostate screening consists of a rectal examination and a blood test called a PSA test (Prostate Specific Antigen). During a rectal examination the doctor inserts his index finger through the anal sphincter and feels the size and consistency of the prostate gland with his fingertip. The prostate is located anteriorly and is normally about the size of a large plum. It is important to realise that if the result of the PSA is high this does not mean that the person has prostate cancer. Screening tests are not diagnostic. They simply indicate that further investigation is needed.