Prostate Cancer: Getting screened could save your life

September is National Prostate Health Month.

There are more than 3 million cases of prostate cancer each year in the U.S.

Dale Swenson had prostate cancer.

"After 42 treatments, it wears you down," said Swenson.

Luckily, it was caught with a routine prostate exam.

"Yes I was a little scared because I think I knew what would be coming down the line," Swenson said.

For many people, being in an exam room is nerve-wracking. But, doctors suggest to outweigh the cons. Having a prostate exam could save your life.

"Prostate cancer is an age-dependent cancer. It's one of those cancers that the biggest risk is actually age," said Hossein Behniaye, Doctor of Family Medicine at Hannibal Regional.

After being diagnosed, Dale underwent radiation to fight the cancer.

"I felt I had an aggressive situation and it would be best to take it to radiation and get it stopped," recounted Swenson.

50-years-old is the typical age a man should have a prostate exam. The exam requires both a blood test and digital rectal exam.

"As a woman, I go through all the testing and what-not that a woman has to have and I expect him to do the same. I'm glad he did," said Betty Swenson.

Dale's wife Betty supported him throughout the process. As did his doctors and church members.

Dale has a message for men who might be a little uneasy about having a prostate exam.

"We're dealing with a very treatable condition. Prostate cancer kills a lot of people if they don't get help and I've had some friends that lost their lives because they went too late," Swenson said.

While experts recommend that men over age 50 are screened, each person is different. Always consult your doctor.

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