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What does the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test help detect?

Arthur W. Perry, MD
Plastic Surgery
Today we have a much better understanding of the strengths and limitations of the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test. In addition to detecting prostate cancer, we now realize that the PSA test is great for detecting benign (non-cancerous) prostate disorders, such as prostate infections (prostatitis) and benign prostate enlargement or BPH. These non-cancerous conditions affect many more men than does prostate cancer. Before proceeding with a biopsy looking for cancer, the goal of PSA testing should be to rule out prostatitis and BPH first. Understanding and implementing this approach makes the PSA test much more effective.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.