New HSE NCCP Prostate guide for patients published

HSE Press Release
Thursday, 23 November 2023
  • Prostate cancer is the most common invasive cancer in Ireland
  • 1 in 7 males in Ireland will get prostate cancer
  • Patient booklets now available at

An updated guide called ‘Having your Prostate Checked’ is now available at the HSE’s health promotion website. The HSE National Cancer Control Programme (NCCP) guide provides information on prostate issues and highlights the importance of shared decision-making when having a prostate check.

Over 3,300 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year and it is the second most common cause of cancer death in men in Ireland. Almost 1 in 3 of all invasive cancers in men in Ireland are due to prostate cancer.

This booklet is for anyone thinking about having their prostate checked. Your GP will help you decide if you should have your prostate checked, and can discuss symptoms, age, ethnicity, family history, genetics, and potential benefits and risks with you.

A prostate check can include:

  • questions about your health
  • a Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) blood test
  • having your prostate examined

Mr Paul Sweeney, HSE National Urological Cancer Clinical Lead, explained: “The guide aims to help patients and their families understand why you might have a prostate check and also understand the impact that a family history of prostate cancer might have. People are encouraged to discuss prostate checks with their GP.”

Dr Una Kennedy, GP Advisor, HSE NCCP, added: “There are many reasons why someone might wish to have their prostate checked, such as concerning symptoms or a family history of prostate issues. This guide was developed to provide clear and easy to understand information about prostate checks, to help people make that decision.”

According to Eileen Nolan, Programme Manager, HSE National Cancer Control Programme, “Prostate cancer is one of the most prevalent cancers affecting men and, as you age, you’re at risk simply because you’re a man. African men and men who have a family history of prostate or breast cancer have an increased likelihood of developing prostate cancer. A prostate check can include questions about your health, a Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) blood test or having your prostate examined. It is always the patient’s choice to have their prostate checked. Your doctor will help you decide.”

Printed copies of ‘Having your Prostate Checked - A Guide’ are can be ordered free of charge or downloaded from

Last updated on: 23 / 11 / 2023