Let’s face it, the phrase sounds ominous, and not least because of the increasing awareness around prostate cancer. One in eight men are diagnosed with it, and only skin cancer is more common amongst American men. But before you let this alarm you, a few facts. Prostate cancer does not prove to be fatal in most cases. More importantly, just because you have elevated PSA levels, does not mean you have prostate cancer. There are a number of reasons why your test might have returned a high PSA number and we’ll talk about some of them here.

What is PSA?

Prostate-specific antigen or PSA is a protein made by the prostate gland. If there’s a problem with your prostate, it releases more PSA. A blood test is used to detect your PSA levels. There isn’t necessarily such a thing as a normal PSA level. Earlier on, a level of 4.0 ng/ml would prompt more testing. However, healthcare professionals now consider a whole range of factors, including your age, overall health, and family history, together with the test results to determine the next course of action. 

While most men with prostate cancer have higher than normal PSA levels, the latter doesn’t imply that you have the former. Around 3 in 4 men with high PSA levels will not have cancer. Moreover, it’s not a perfect test either. It can miss about 15% of prostate cancers.  

Reasons for Elevated PSA Levels

  1. Age

Your PSA levels could rise as you age. This is normal enough and could be due to the growth of benign, prostatic tissue or an enlargement of the prostate which is common with age.

  1. Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)

Infections in the urinary tract can be caused by a number of things, including frequent sexual intercourse, poor hygiene, urine discharge problems, and diabetes among others. UTIs can lead to symptoms such as a constant urge to urinate, inability to fully relieve the bladder, a burning sensation during urination, pain in the lower back or abdomen, and fever.

Infections become more common with age and may lead to a high PSA number on your tests.

  1. Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)

BPH, or an enlarged prostate, is a common cause for elevated PSA levels among older men. It often leads to problems with discharging urine, including difficulty initiating it, frequent and urgent need to urinate, weak urine flow, and inability to fully empty the bladder. BPH is sometimes also cited as a cause of erectile dysfunction.

  1. Prostatitis

Prostatitis, or inflammation of the prostate, is common even in men under 50. It’s usually the result of a bacterial infection and leads to irritation and swelling of the prostate. Its symptoms are a lot like those caused by UTIs. It can lead to a high PSA number on a blood test.

  1. Frequent Ejaculation

Ejaculation has been linked to elevated PSA levels in the past, particularly in the 24 hours following the activity. More research is needed to establish a direct connection.

  1. Injury to the Prostate

If you’ve sustained an injury to the groin or lower abdominal area, it may lead to higher than normal PSA levels. The same goes for any bruising resulting from surgical procedures.

You should remember that the health of your prostate, like that of any other part of your body, can be managed. Diet, exercise, and small lifestyle changes are all good options to improve prostate health. If you keep a very busy schedule or want some extra support, you can incorporate a dietary supplement into your routine. Prostate Support by Howdy Handsome is a 100% organic formulation that helps you improve the quality of your life and manage incessant urinary urges. Read through some of our testimonials or contact us for any questions you have. Keep up with our blog for frequent tips on managing prostate health and elevated PSA levels.

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