Prostate Cancer Diagnosis
Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed male cancer in the UK; 40000 men are diagnosed each year. Most men with early prostate cancer have no symptoms at all, whilst others develop problems passing urine or emptying the bladder. Prostate cancer that has spread outside of the prostate can cause symptoms including bony pain, tiredness, weight loss, blood in the semen or erectile problems.
Most prostate cancers are diagnosed in men over the age of 50. The risk of developing prostate cancer is higher in African-Caribbean and African men, and also in men who have an affected father, brother or other close relative. There is thought to be a slight increased risk in men who have a family history of breast or ovarian cancer.
The process of diagnosing a prostate cancer involves a PSA blood test, Multiparametric MRI scan and a biopsy of the prostate.
If a man has an elevated PSA or abnormal prostate examination, a multiparametric MRI scan provides important information on the size of the prostate, likelihood of cancer and location of cancer within the prostate. The scan usually takes around 45 minutes. After undergoing an MRI scan, many men can safely avoid proceeding to a prostate biopsy.