Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) is a protein produced by cells of the prostate gland. The PSA test measures the level of PSA in the blood; when this protein is elevated, it’s a sign that something’s not right.
In addition to prostate cancer, a number of non-cancerous conditions can cause a man’s PSA level to rise, including: prostatitis (inflammation of the prostate) and benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) or enlargement of the prostate. There is no evidence that prostatitis or BPH leads to prostate cancer, but it is possible for a man to have one or both of these conditions and to develop prostate cancer as well.
The American Cancer Society estimates 238,590 new cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed and 29,720 men will die of prostate cancer in the United States in 2013.
Prostate cancer occurs mainly in older men. Nearly two thirds are diagnosed in men aged 65 or older, and it is rare before age 40. The average age at the time of diagnosis is about 67. But here’s the thing, a simple blood test will determine your risk and the conditions described above are very treatable.