PSA stands for "prostate-specific antigen" which is found in your blood. It is a protein produced by both cancerous and noncancerous tissue in the prostate. The prostate is a part of the male reproductive system. It is located just below the bladder and in front of the rectum. PSA test is conducted to screen for prostate cancer. It is a blood test. There are two types of PSA tests: a total PSA test and a free PSA test. The antigens in the blood can be bound as well as free-floating. The prostate-specific antigen that is bound to other proteins is called a bound PSA and the antigen that is free flowing in the blood without attaching itself to other proteins is called free PSA. Separate tests are required for free PSA and total PSA. In free PSA, the sample is tested for the presence of free antigens (that are not bound to other proteins) and in the total PSA test both bound and free antigens are observed. Sometimes, depending on the patient's health, single or both tests are needed.
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