digital rectal examination

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digital rectal examination (DRE),

a manual examination done with the physician's hand gloved to check anatomic structures about the pelvis and lower abdomen. The procedure is often combined with a general physical examination.
Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012

digital rectal examination

The insertion of a gloved & lubricated index finger per rectum by an examiner to palpate the prostate–and detect ↑ firmness, and anorectal mucosa, given its efficacy as a screening tool for identifying lower rectal and prostatic lesions–BPH or CA
McGraw-Hill Concise Dictionary of Modern Medicine. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

digital rectal examination

Abbreviation: DRE
Palpation of the anus, rectum, and prostate gland with a gloved finger, used in the diagnosis of intestinal bleeding, anorectal pain, and both benign and malignant diseases of the prostate.

Patient care

The patient should be positioned for comfort, e.g., in Sims position (lying on the left side with knees and hips comfortably flexed). A chaperone and/or a drape should be provided for patient safety, comfort, and dignity. After an explanation of the procedure to the patient, several mL of surgical lubricant are placed on the examiner's glove, usually on the index finger. The examiner visually inspects the anus and perineum, then places the gloved finger on the anal opening while asking the patient to bear down gently. After the finger enters the anus, it is used to sweep circumferentially around the interior of the distal intestine. It is then directed anteriorly (when examining a male patient) to evaluate the consistency, size, and nodularity of the prostate gland. Samples of stool obtained during the exam may be sent to the lab to test them for the presence of occult blood.

See also: examination
Medical Dictionary, © 2009 Farlex and Partners

Digital rectal examination

A routine screening test that is used to detect any lumps in the prostate gland or any hardening or other abnormality of the prostate tissue. The doctor inserts a gloved and lubricated finger (digit) into the patient's rectum, which lies just behind the prostate. Typically, since a majority of tumors develop in the posterior region of the prostate, they can be detected through the rectum.
Mentioned in: Anoscopy, Prostate Biopsy
Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Role of prostate specific antigen, digital rectal examination and trans rectal ultra sonography in the diagnosis of prostate cancer in patients with lower urinary tract symptoms.
Only early detected prostatic tumors are curable and even those that are detected clinically on digital rectal examination are advanced and require palliative therapy5.
The effect of digital rectal examination, flexible cystoscopy and prostatic biopsy on free and total prostate specific antigen, and the free-to-total prostate specific antigen ratio in clinical practice.
This follow-up included PSA tests and a digital rectal examination every three months for two years, and a repeat biopsy 6-12 months after the initial diagnosis and yearly when indicated.
In the United Kingdom, studies have shown that the number of digital rectal examinations performed by medical students during clinical training fell between 1990 and 2000 from a median of 11-30 to a median of 3-5 (Hennigan, Franks, Hocken, & Allen-Mersh, 1991; Turner & Brewster, 2000).
During an evaluation, you'll be asked about your medical history and undergo a digital rectal examination, in which the doctor inserts a gloved finger into the rectum to feel for abnormalities.
Scores from 0 to 3 for each criteria were defined (clinical by digital rectal examination, biological by specific prostate antigen and sonography), a score of 2 and 3 points was considered positive for neoplasia.
Cancer societies recommend that men over 50 submit to an uncomfortable colonoscopy every five years, as well as a very uncomfortable digital rectal examination yearly in order to more readily detect the onset of prostate cancer.
Major Ron talked us all around possible symptoms, such as getting up out of bed too often for a pee, and persuaded many of us to ask our GP for a PSA blood test and a digital rectal examination.
One of the studies enrolled 2,665 individuals aged 50-75 years, most of whom were male, who had a digital rectal examination with a fecal occult blood test, were sent home with Hemoccult II cards to collect six fecal samples from three stools, and also underwent a colonoscopy (Ann.
A digital rectal examination demonstrated an enlarged prostate that was nontender.
Methods: In the Prostate Prevention Trial, we randomly assigned 18,882 men 55 years of age or older with a normal digital rectal examination and a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) level of 3.0 ng per milliliter or lower to treatment with finasteride (5 mg per day) or placebo for seven years.

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