East Texas Medical Center Regional Healthcare System screened 1,502 men during the ninth annual free prostate cancer screening.
Every summer during June, ETMC offers free PSA (prostate specific antigen) blood tests to East Texas men at risk. The blood test identifies the level of PSA in the blood. An elevated level can be an early sign of prostate cancer.
During the past nine years, ETMC has screened more than 25,000 men during these screenings.
ETMC Cancer Institute Director Todd Sigmon says, "Of the 1,502 men screened, 61 of the tests came back with abnormal values. We have contacted those patients, advised them to have a follow-up with their physician or a urologist and helped facilitate those appointments as needed."
Symptoms of prostate cancer may include the following: a painful or burning sensation when urinating, difficulty starting or stopping urine flow or inability to urinate, continuous pain in the lower back, pelvis or upper thighs, painful ejaculation, frequent urination, and blood in urine.
"When prostate cancer is in its earliest, most curable stage, there may be no symptoms to warn you," according to James Kolker, MD, radiation oncologist, and medical director of the ETMC Cancer Institute. "Prostate cancer is highly curable when detected early."
According to the American Cancer Society, prostate cancer kills 27,050 men each year in the U.S.
This year 218,890 new cases will be found. If you missed this year's screening or have any symptoms, don't wait. Contact your physician for a prostate screening test.