THE BLOG
04/24/2009 05:12 am ET Updated Nov 17, 2011

Extending Male Longevity -- Why Prostate Screening Still Makes Sense

WE NEED TO KEEP SCREENING FOR PROSTATE PROBLEMS

I didn't know that when I happened on a surgeon to remove my Gleason 7 prostate, that I would not only get the world's foremost practitioner of robotic surgical procedures but also a crusader for men.

That last mouthful is probably a thought-stopper. Who has, since the days of Robin Morgan and Germaine Greer, crusaded for men? Well, we had the Promise Keepers and I tend to think of them as the corporate predecessor to Joe the Plumber. And we did have the Million Man March, but that got caught up in the miasmal mists of the culture war era.

Dr. David Samadi is a crusader for men because he knows what can happen when politicians get their minds around misconceptions and translate them into laws that they can say will save money. The good doctor knows such laws would lose lives.

To understand all this, please click the link at the start of this post.

I do not think men, particularly American men, are an oppressed class. And I do not get inspired by all the emphasis on ED and the need for good sex from puberty on. There are many issues on which I veer toward the female side. You cannot have worked for UNICEF without being aware that the playing field is still massively skewed against "the second sex", to coin an invidious phrase..

But it is important these days to begin to get the either-or vice out of our thoughts. Both-and is better. Perspectivism is better. Spectrum understanding is better.

Dr. Samadi knows that if the public accepts the idea that PSA screenings are unreliable, a sort of extra that makes no difference, the baby will go out with the bathwater. The baby in this case is intelligent action after a PSA test reveals a problem.

My PSA test revealed no problem. If I had not had a rectal exam I would be walking around now with a certified time bomb inside. The fact is that men need more than the PSA test, much more.

And there are benchmarks beyond PSA testing that are much more reliable indicators of danger.

I am all for standing up and taking responsibility. Standing up and taking responsibility is best achieved by people who know what they are talking about. History is made by such of these who do stand up. This is a time for history to be made in every area of existence.

Enough said I think.

For more on my own recent prostate adventure, please see The New York Times Prostate Editorial Is Lacking

http://stephencrose.wordpress.com/