Taking care of your health is important. And for men, that includes the health of your prostate. One of the best ways to ensure your health and prevent any issues is getting a DRE -- also known as a digital rectal exam.
What is a digital rectal exam?
A digital rectal exam is a method of checking the health of your prostate and to screen for prostate cancer. Prostate cancer is one of leading causes of death among men. But with DREs, prostate health can be monitored and cancer can be detected early.
How is a digital rectal exam performed?
Because the prostate is an internal organ, it cannot be seen directly. As the prostate is located in front of the rectum, your doctor can feel the prostate by inserting a gloved finger. This way, your medical provider can feel for any abnormalities and check that your prostate is healthy.
During the exam, your doctor will feel the prostate for any hard, lumpy, or abnormal areas. The exam is short and will only last a few minutes.
Why should I get a digital rectal exam?
We know it may be an uncomfortable process, but DREs are a great form of preventive care. And, if there is a problem with your prostate, a medical provider will be able to detect any problems and further assist you.
Screening & detecting for cancer
Prostate cancer is one of the leading causes of death for men. As with many cancers, the risk of developing prostate cancer increases as men get older, with 1 of every 9 men over the age of 70 developing the cancer. About 1 man in 41 will die of prostate cancer.
African American men are the highest risk of developing prostate cancer. The second highest at-risk race is White, and the third highest is Hispanic/Latino.
Where can I get a DRE?
You can have a DRE done by your primary care doctor. DREs are typically done as part of your annual physical checkup. However, you can request one be performed by your doctor at any time.
How Apicha CHC can help you
If you do not have a primary health care provider at this time, consider learning more about Apicha Community Health Center. We have many providers who are experts in their fields and can provide screenings for prostate cancer as well as many other types of anal cancer at our clinic. You can request an appointment here, or click below.