When should I check the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) level of a 43-year-old man with a clinical diagnosis of acute prostatitis?
—Haytham Kawii, MD, Baton Rouge, La.
A yearly PSA determination and digital rectal exam are currently recommended as screening tests for prostate cancer in men over age 50. In patients with a risk factor, such as race or family history, screening should begin at age 40. There would be no reason to measure PSA in this particular individual until long after the acute episode of prostatitis has responded to treatment.
—David T. Noyes, MD (110-7)