Digital rectal exam (DRE)
An exam of the prostate. The doctor or nurse inserts a lubricated, gloved finger into the rectum and feels the prostate through the rectal wall to identify lumps, irregularities or enlargement. Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test
A test that measures the level of PSA in the blood. PSA is a substance made by the prostate that may be found in an increased amount in the blood of men who have prostate cancer. PSA may also be elevated in a number of other benign conditions Transrectal ultrasound
A procedure in which a probe that is about the size of a finger is inserted into the rectum to check the prostate. The probe is used to bounce high-energy sound waves (ultrasound) off internal tissues or organs. The echoes form a picture of body tissues called a sonogram. Transrectal ultrasound is used to visualize the prostate, calculate prostate size (volume), and to identify abnormalities so as to more accurately direct needle placement during a biopsy procedure. Biopsy
The removal of cells or tissues so they can be viewed under a microscope by a pathologist. The pathologist will examine the biopsy sample to check for cancer cells and other abnormalities.