Prostate cancer is often written off as an "old man's" disease, but the reality is that it can strike men in their 40s, 50s and 60s, and often doesn't produce any symptoms at all in its early, curable, stages. However, there is a simple and cheap blood test that can detect prostate problems and trigger further investigations. This test is called Prostate Specific Antigen, or PSA. It is not a perfect test for cancer, but for most men who are eventually diagnosed with Prostate cancer, it is usually their first step along the path of getting a diagnosis.
For whatever incomprehensible reason, the government has decided against mass PSA screening of all men. Although any man can request a test from his GP, it is a sad fact that most don't request a test because they're either unaware of its existence, or they don't have any symptoms, or they're just men and never see the doctor! Tragically, about 10000 men die from Prostate cancer each year.
If you are as sickened and outraged by this waste of life as I am, then I urge you to vote in this e-Petition, calling upon the government to institute a national PSA screening programme:
Additionally, if you are a man older than 45 please can I urge you to see your doctor and request a PSA test. Please don't allow yourself to be fobbed off with vague reassurances - insist on having the test. I can speak from personal experience when I say that Prostate cancer has an excellent prognosis when it's caught early.