Why Order Prostate Tests Online?
Prostate testing is recommended by the National Cancer Institute as well as the American Cancer Society. Health Testing Centers offers PSA blood tests, which measure the amount of PSA, or Prostate-Specific Antigen in your body. We can also test Prostatic Acid Phosphatase (PAP) levels as well as DHT (Dihydrotestosterone) levels. We also offer a comprehensive cancer panel to generate a complete workup of your hormone levels.
At Health Testing Centers we make PSA screening easy by allowing you to avoid the hassle of visiting your doctor. Through healthtestingcenters.com, we offer prostate testing, including Doctor's oversight, using the same labs that your doctor utilizes. Test results are not a part of your permanent medical record and are securely delivered to you, saving time and money.
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Prostate Lab Tests (A-Z)
PSA test measures the level of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) to evaluate prostate function in men.
Measures the level of freely circulating prostate-specific antigen (PSA) to evaluate prostate function in men age 40 and older
This blood test will measure the level of Prostatic Acid Phosphatatse (PAP) in the blood.
The Ultrasensitive PSA test is used to measure the level of Prostate Specific Antigen in the blood. This test is typically used after prostate surgery or during treatment as it is able to detect PSA in smaller amounts.
Prostate Health FAQ
Reviewed By: Dr. Kurt Kloss, MD
Last Reviewed Date: Jan 24, 2020
Last Modified Date: Jan 24, 2020
Published Date: Jul 29, 2017
In the United States, Prostate cancer is a very common type of cancer in men, second only to skin cancer in the number of men affected. Fortunately, a prostate cancer diagnosis is not irreversible. It is also one of the most successfully treated cancers with when it is detected and treated in its earliest stages. Cancer death due to prostate issues has fallen due to early detection, which is critical to successful prostate cancer treatment. However, the risk of prostate cancer rises as men age.
Men with local stage cancer, where cancer is confined to the prostate, or regional stage, where cancer has spread only to areas close to the gland, have a 5-year survival rate of 100 percent, according to the American Cancer Society. An early diagnosis of prostate cancer is crucial. Cancer cells that have gone undiagnosed long enough to spread further have a five-year survival rate of just 29 percent, providing a clear picture of the importance of regular prostate cancer screening. View sample prostate test results with lab variations, ranges and explanations.
Some PSA results tests provide a false-positive, which means that PSA levels are high but there is no existence of cancer. This is a crucial reason to be tested on a regular basis after a certain age.
When should you get tested for prostate cancer?
If you are experiencing symptoms that could be related to prostate problems, getting screened for prostate cancer is wise. Symptoms that should prompt PSA testing include:
- Frequent urges to urinate
- Frequent nighttime urination
- Pain or burning during urination
- A weak or interrupted urine stream
- Urinary incontinence, leakage
- Painful ejaculation
- Blood in urine or semen
- Frequent stiffness or pain in the lower back, hips, pelvis or upper thighs
Men with no symptoms may have PSA levels in the normal range but should have routine PSA level testing once a year. For the average man, PSA prostate screening should begin at age 50, when a man's chances of developing early-stage prostate cancer begin to rise rapidly. For men at high risk, annual screening should be done beginning at age 40. Men with the following risk factors are considered high risk for the development of prostate cancer:
Family history of prostate cancer is a leading contributor. Men with first degree relatives (fathers, sons and/or brothers) who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer are at higher than average risk for developing the disease. If family history reveals that those relatives developed prostate cancer before age 65, risk is even greater.
Men of African-American heritage, since prostate cancer risk rates are higher among this ethnic group. Men who are 65 years of age or older, who account for about two of every three prostate cancer cases, are at higher risk according to the American Cancer Society. As cancer care is much more effective early, American men should test PSA levels according to their age, which can help minimize stress for the individual as well as loved ones.
How do you diagnose prostate cancer?
Prostate cancer is often first detected through prostate screening. The standard screening test is a blood test called a Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) test. This test measures levels of PSA in the blood stream, a protein produced by the prostate gland. There are two types of prostate-specific antigens: 1) bound PSA, which circulate through the blood stream bound to other proteins, and 2) free PSA, which travel alone through the blood stream.
A PSA test measures the total of both free and bound PSA, while a free-PSA test measures the percentage of unbound PSA only.
High levels of PSA are often found in men who have developed prostate cancer. However, a high PSA level does not always mean cancer. Other conditions and factors that can increase PSA levels, include:
Enlarged prostate – This condition, also called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), is a non-cancerous enlargement of the gland. It is very common among men as they reach middle age and beyond, and often causes PSA levels to rise.
Prostatitis – This is infection or inflammation of the prostate gland, which can cause an increase in PSA.
Medications – Men who are prescribed male hormones, such as testosterone, or medications that increase testosterone levels may have elevated PSA levels triggered by these medications.
Aging – PSA levels rise gradually as men grow older, even when no prostatitis, cancer or other prostate issues are present.
Given these other potential causes, a high result from PSA testing is just the first step in diagnosing prostate cancer. A special type of PSA test, such as the Prostate Health Index (PHI), may also be ordered. Men with high prostate PSA typically have further testing that may include a digital rectal exam, in which a doctor examines the gland for abnormalities via the rectum, a prostate biopsy, where a sample of prostate tissue is examined for signs of cancer, and medical imaging procedures (such as an MRI or transrectal ultrasound). The PCA3 is another lab test that is performed in some cases to confirm diagnosis of prostate cancer.
Prostate cancer cells are then typically assigned a Gleason score, a grade ranging from 2 (nonaggressive cancer) to 10 (very aggressive cancer). From there, treatment options become clearer for your healthcare provider. Treatment options are often weighed against side effects and a concern of disease overdiagnosis.
What is a normal prostate reading?
According to MedlinePlus, what is considered a normal PSA level in men during a cancer screen varies according to age. Men in their 50s or younger should have PSA levels below 2.5 nanograms per milliliter (ng/ml) of blood. In older men, a PSA level of 4.0 ng/ml are considered to be normal.
According to the American Cancer Society, men with a prostate PSA level between 4 and 10 ng/ml have a 1 in 4 chance of having prostate cancer. In men with PSA levels of 10 ng/ml or more, the chances of having prostate cancer are more that 50 percent. Additionally, the American Cancer Society also notes that the level considered normal varies from one urologist (urinary tract specialist) to another, with some recommending further testing with PSA test results as low as 2.5 or 3 – a decision that is often influenced by a patient's personal risk factors, including age, race and family prostate cancer history.
What age should you have a prostate exam?
The term "prostate exam" generally refers to a digital rectal exam (DRE), which may be done in combination with a PSA test during cancer screenings or independently as a routine prostate health check. The DRE is a physical examination, done by your doctor, of the prostate gland. To perform this exam, your doctor will insert a gloved and lubricated finger into the rectum to feel for any changes or abnormalities in the prostate gland including enlargement, bumps, hard areas or texture changes that may indicate prostate conditions and/or prostate cancer.
Active surveillance of hormone irregularities is key to preventing prostate cancer. Testing follow-up may be necessary for certain results. Men of any age who have noticed any of the prostate-related symptoms listed above should see their doctor for a prostate exam immediately. Routine annual prostate exams, as part of standard preventive care, are recommended for all men 40 years of age or above, as risk of developing most prostate conditions begins to rise in men of this age group.
For information on current clinical trials associated with prostate cancer and treatment options visit the American Cancer Society.
Where can I get prostate testing near me?
PSA tests are not available as a home test. Select your state below or use our lab locator to search by zip-code for a LabCorp or Quest Diagnostics laboratory near you.