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.

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

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

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
References in periodicals archive ?
Prostate cancer detection in a clinical urological practice by ultrasonography, digital rectal examination and prostate specific antigen.
Cancer of prostate is common in Pakistan7,8 and in spite of taking careful history and performing digital rectal examination about 10% patients will still have prostate cancer when the specimen is subjected to histopathology following surgery for benign prostatic hyperplasia9,10.
The effect of digital rectal examination on the serum prostate specific antigen concentration: results of a randomized study.
The investigators concluded that patients who are followed by watchful waiting must be selected using narrowly defined inclusion criteria and closely followed with a regimen of PSA testing, digital rectal examination and repeat biopsy.
Experience and attitudes of final-year medical students to digital rectal examination.
Key words: Digital rectal examination, PSA, Prostate cancer, Hypoechoic peripheral zone lesion, Prostate biopsy, TRUS.
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.
In addition, a digital rectal examination should be performed after the blood test, not before.
The PMTF's guidelines, for example, do not recommend routine tests for prostate cancer, while the American Cancer Society urges men at high risk to get both the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test and the digital rectal examination annually, beginning at age 50, for men who have a life expectancy of at least an additional 10 years.
Physicians can easily feel the prostate with the index finger inserted into the rectum--a digital rectal examination (DRE).
The trial includes annual screening with prostate-specific antigen (PSA) and a digital rectal examination.

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