Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test

Prostate-specific Antigen (PSA) Blood Test

A prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test is a screening tool used to detect prostate cancer in men. The PSA test measures the amount of prostate-specific antigen in the blood. It is generally recommended for men between the ages of 50 and 75, but may be performed in younger men if they have an increased risk of prostate cancer.


No preparation is typically needed before a PSA test. Your doctor will explain the procedure and any potential risks before performing the test.


During the procedure, your doctor will draw a sample of your blood and send it to a laboratory for analysis. The results of your PSA test will be reported to your doctor within a few days.

Types of PSA Test

There are two types of PSA tests: Total PSA and Free PSA. The Total PSA test measures the amount of all the prostate-specific antigen in the blood. The Free PSA test measures the amount of non-bound, or “free-floating”, prostate-specific antigen in the blood.


The PSA test is non-invasive and carries minimal risk. It is possible to experience slight discomfort during the procedure, but this is generally minimal. The results of the test may generate false positives, so it is important to speak to your doctor about the results if they are concerning to you.

Why Have a PSA Test?

The PSA test is an important screening tool for prostate cancer and can help detect it early. Early detection of prostate cancer can lead to more effective treatment options and improved outcomes.

When to Have a PSA Test?

Most men should have a PSA test every year starting at age 50. Men at higher risk for prostate cancer, such as African Americans and those who have a family history of the disease, should start testing at age 45. Speak to your doctor to determine the best screening schedule for you.