Northside offers free prostate cancer screenings

Part of Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

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ATLANTA – It’s estimated that nearly 6,500 men in Georgia will be diagnosed with prostate cancer this year, according to the National Cancer Institute (NCI). It remains the most frequently diagnosed cancer in men, aside from skin cancer. Georgia has the fourth highest fatality rate for prostate cancer in the country.

To help raise awareness of the disease, Northside Hospital’s Cancer Institute is offering a free prostate cancer screening to the community as aprt of National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month.

“Men who have already developed symptoms from prostate cancer are usually beyond a curable stage,” said Scott Miller, MD, medical director of Northside Hospital’s Advanced Laparoscopic and Robotic Surgery Program. “Screening tests are designed to diagnosis a disease before it becomes symptomatic. Prostate cancer screening can help assess the risk of prostate cancer in an individual and detect the disease at an earlier stage.”

Miller said men should begin discussing prostate screening at age 40. Although prostate cancer is relatively uncommon in early adulthood, younger men who are diagnosed with prostate cancer are more likely to die from this disease as compared to those diagnosed later in life, he said.

Health care professionals will screen adult men for symptoms of prostate cancer and offer prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood tests and rectal exams at no charge. Uninsured men, ages 40-75, who have never been diagnosed with prostate cancer and haven’t had a prostate exam within the past year, are eligible to participate. A limited number of appointments are available for men with insurance. A nurse navigator will be available to help arrange follow up care, if indicated.

Northside Hospital claims it deals with more cases of the than at any other community hospital in Georgia. The PSA test is important in diagnosing prostate cancer at an early, more treatable stage in the course of the disease. Men are encouraged to talk with their health care provider to determine if screening for prostate cancer is right for them.

The prostate cancer screenings are free, but registration is required. Call 404-845-5555 and press "0" to schedule an appointment.

For more about Northside Hospital or the screening, visit them online at www.northside.com. Northside has facilities throughout the metro region, including Forsyth County.