Did you see this new public service announcement on prostate cancer with Al Roker and Craig Melvin from the Today Show?  The Prostate Cancer Foundation teamed up with the show to shoot this funny segment that has the guys on the ice with the New Jersey Devils hockey team doing different kinds of hockey checks.

Whether it be a hip check, poke check, sweep check, cross-check, lift check, or shoulder check, the idea is that there is one more check every man needs - a prostate check. One in nine men will develop prostate cancer, so it is so important to get screened.  These checks can keep you in, or knock you out of the game. I know, guys, not your favorite topic, but it can save your life, and it starts with something as simple as a PSA blood test.

The prostate is an essential male function for reproduction and directly affects reproductive health. There are five notable symptoms of prostate cancer including noticeable burning while urinating, bone pain in the surrounding area, erectile dysfunction, inability to urinate standing up and blood in the urine. Men's health can often be swept under the rug for a variety of reasons. While it may be uncomfortable to discuss these types of symptoms, it is crucial to talk with your close family members and your doctor about any issues you may be experiencing.

Prostate cancer primarily affects men over the age of 60 but don't be mistaken, according to the Mayo Clinic,  men between 19 to 40 as well as men ages 40 to 60 can be similarly affected. But what is prostate cancer exactly? When an abnormal number or cancerous cells grow in the prostate it can create a tumor or cancerous growth around the prostate. After 40 men with no family history should get checked every 2 to 4 years based on the discretion of their doctor.

Prostate cancer kills nearly 30,000 people every year. One in 41 men will die of prostate cancer,  but survival rates are high if it is caught in its early stages. Nearly 3 million American men live today as survivors.

So suit up, and get in the game, talk to your doctor and ask about prostate health. There's no time like the present to get ahead of the game, or the puck, and get checked (hopefully not over the boards) to live a long and healthy life.


Getty Images/iStockphoto
Getty Images/iStockphoto

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