It’s true that advanced stage prostate cancer may cause trouble urinating (either a slow stream, or going to the bathroom frequently), as well as blood in the urine, erection problems, or—in very late-stage cases where it’s spread to the bones—hip, back, or chest pain. But most of the time, “prostate cancer has no signs whatsoever,” says Randy Wexler, MD, an associate professor of family medicine at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. Which is why…
Only about 25% of men with a moderately high PSA level actually have prostate cancer, and sometimes even when they do the disease is very slow-growing. That said, there isn’t any better way at the moment to detect prostate cancer. That’s why many experts, including Wexler, say it’s still a good idea for most men to get a PSA test at age 50. If they have risk factors like being African- American or a family history, they may need to start as early as 40.
In case you were wondering, having lots of sex doesn’t make a man any more likely to develop prostate cancer—despite long-standing rumors to the contrary. Ditto for getting a vasectomy: A study published last September found no link between getting snipped and a man’s risk of this disease.
Images from prevention.com