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Research Medical Center
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Research Brookside
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Screening for Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)

The purpose of screening is early diagnosis and treatment. Screening tests are usually administered to people without current symptoms, but who may be at high risk for certain diseases or conditions.

Screening Tests

The digital rectal exam can detect BPH . This involves your doctor inserting a gloved finger into the lower rectum. From here, your doctor can estimate the size of your prostate, identify some (but not all) cancers, and find anal diseases.

A prostate specific antigen (PSA) test may be done as a screening tool for prostate cancer (not for BPH). Unfortunately, men with prostate cancer or BPH can have high PSA levels. Other prostate conditions such as prostatitis can also lead to high PSA levels. More tests or studies may need to be done to determine that exact cause of the high PSA level.

Revision Information

  • American Urological Association Practice Guidelines Committee. AUA guideline on management of benign prostatic hyperplasia. J Urol. 2003;170:530-547.

  • Burnett AL, Wein AJ. Benign prostatic hyperplasia in primary care: what you need to know. J Urol. 2006;175:S19-24.

  • Diagnosis of BPH. American Urological Association Foundation website. Available at: http://www.urologyhealth.org/. Updated November 2006. Accessed November 22, 2009.

  • Dull P, Reagan R, et al. Managing benign prostatic hyperplasia. Am Fam Physician. 2002;66:87-88.

  • Members of the Prostate-Specific Antigen Best Practice Statement Panel (2009). Prostate-Specific Antigen Best Practice Statement: 2009 Update. Available at http://www.auanet.org/content/guidelines-and-quality-care/clinical-guidelines/main-reports/psa09.pdf. Accessed July 26, 2010.

  • National Kidney Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse website. Available at: http://kidney.niddk.nih.gov/.

  • Prostate cancer screening. American Urological Association Foundation website. Available at: http://www.urologyhealth.org/. Updated May 2009. Accessed November 22, 2009.

  • Screening for prostate cancer: current recommendation. US Preventative Services Task Force website. Available at: http://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/prostatecancerscreening.htm. Published May 2012. Accessed July 27, 2012.