The digital rectal examination (DRE)
Prostate cancer often causes a change in the gland which can be felt by the doctor when he puts his gloved finger inside the rectum. Normally the prostate should feel smooth or elastic. If it feels hard or woody, this may indicate cancer.
By inserting a finger into your back passage your doctor can assess the size and texture of your prostate gland. Many men dislike the idea of this, and so delay seeing a doctor.
However, a digital rectal examination (DRE) is a routine procedure. Your doctor will be just as matter-of-fact as if he were examining the glands in your neck. He will wear gloves and use a water-based jelly as a lubricant. Only the index finger will be inserted.
Page created on February 28th, 2010
Page updated on March 25th, 2010