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Questions to ask about testing for prostate cancer
Before you talk to your doctor, find out what you can about your family history of prostate cancer. It will help to know if your father, brother or son has had prostate cancer. If yes, at what age were they diagnosed?
Ask your doctor
- What is my risk of developing prostate cancer?
- Is there anything I can do to lower my risk?
- What tests should I have, if any?
- How often should I be tested?
- Could I benefit from having a PSA test and DRE?
- Could I be harmed by a PSA test and DRE?
- What happens if my results are normal?
- What happens if my results aren’t normal?
- Do I have to pay for the tests? If yes, how much?
Your doctor can help by giving you the information you need, but only you can make the decision that is right for you. You may want to ask yourself:
- What would I choose to do if testing found my PSA level to be high?
- What would I do if further tests show I have early prostate cancer?
- Would I be comfortable knowing that I have prostate cancer but that it doesn’t need active treatment (surgery, drugs or radiation) right away? How stressful would I find this?