As men age, they become more susceptible to certain health conditions, such as the dreaded prostate problem,

The prostate is a small gland situated below the bladder and in front of the rectum.  It is an important part of the male reproductive system, and its main function is to produce and secrete fluid that nourishes and protects sperm. As you get older, your prostate naturally enlarges.

Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) is a protein that is produced in healthy cells in the prostate gland, so there will always be a low level, but it is also produced by unhealthy cells and this is why PSA is used as an indicator for a possible case of prostate cancer.

Unfortunately, prostate problems are very common and can cause a lot of discomfort and serious health issues if left untreated.  BioSURE’s Prostate Health (PSA) Screening Test allows men to take a test and understand their PSA levels, from the comfort of their own home, and monitor on a regular basis.

In this blog post, we take a look at some of the more common prostate problems that men could face, as well as the importance of self-testing with the BioSURE Prostate Screening Kit.

Listed here are some of the more common prostate problems that men face.

Prostatitis – this is inflammation of the prostate gland, usually caused by a bacterial infection.  Symptoms may include lower back or pelvic area pain and painful urinating.

Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) – this is a non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate gland which causes symptoms such as frequent urination, difficulty stopping and starting urination, and a weak urination stream.

Prostate Cancer – this is a malignant growth that develops in the gland. Early-stage prostate cancer may not show any symptoms, but as it progresses could cause difficulty in urinating, blood in the urine and semen and, lower back, thighs, or hip pain.

If you experience any of the above symptoms, on a regular basis, then the BioSURE  Prostate Health (PSA) Screening Test will give you a good picture of your PSA level, which you can use to speak to your doctor about.

Using the BioSURE Self Testing Kit is simple and straightforward. Easy to follow instructions are provided and there is also a simple walk-through flow for you to follow in the app, for you to collect your fingerprick blood sample. You then send back to the lab in prepaid packaging, where it will usually be processed within 24 hours of receipt. Your then get an email as soon as your results are ready so you can log in to your secure account and access your easy-to-read results report, accompanied with supporting information about what your result means. You can then download a PDF if you want to share that with your doctor, who will recognise your clinically valid report.

It is important to note that while self-testing with a home kit is very useful for monitoring your prostate health, it is not a substitute for a regular check-up. In the UK there is not a national screening programme, but if you are aged over 50 you can chat with your GP who can discuss your risk with you and send you for testing (unless you already have your BioSURE result). 

Having a high level of PSA does not necessarily mean you have prostate cancer. Abnormal levels can be related to other prostate conditions that are not cancer, such as an infection (prostatitis) or just an enlarged prostate. A PSA test gives your overall PSA levels, but it cannot tell the difference between abnormal PSA levels from prostate cancer or non-cancerous conditions. There are also two main types of prostate cancer, an aggressive type that needs treatment, and also a slow-growing cancer that may never cause symptoms or shorten life. 

If your PSA levels are higher than normal, you should discuss with your doctor who will talk with you about having more tests to diagnose the cause. These tests may include:

A digital rectal exam (DRE) – for this test, your doctor inserts a gloved, lubricated finger into your rectum to feel your prostate for lumps or anything unusual.

urine test – a sample of your urine is tested for infection.

An MRI test – You will usually be sent for an MRI scan before having a prostate biopsy.  

A prostate biopsy – a biopsy is a minor surgery that takes a sample of tissue from your prostate so it can be studied under a microscope to look for cancer cells. A biopsy is the only way to diagnose the type of cancer.

In conclusion, understanding your prostate health is important for men of all ages, not just men over a certain age, especially if you are experiencing symptoms. By using the BioSURE Prostate PSA Screening Kit you can take pro-active steps to knowing your prostate health and monitoring it over time, preventing a more serious health problem in the long run.

The BioSURE Prostate PSA Screening Kit is available for purchase here and at many pharmacies.