As someone who recently had my own prostate exam, I can say that it's certainly not the most comfortable procedure — but it's also relatively simple, quick and (bonus!) can actually end up saving your life. So, I'm happy to see "Today" show hosts Matt Lauer and Al Roker doing their best to promote it in front of a huge television audience.
Now naturally, audiences weren't taken right into the examination room with both men. Instead, they were tastefully shown entering a room, closing a door, and then emerging less than a minute later with the results.
"It doesn't hurt at all. Is it the best 34 seconds of your life? Probably not," said Matt. "But if in 34 seconds a (doctor) can detect something that might save your life, what are we talking about?" Dr. David Samadi, chairman of urology at Lenox Hill in Manhattan, revealed that Lauer's prostate was healthy, normal sized, smooth and nodule-free.
As for Roker, the 59-year-old's examination revealed an enlarged prostate, but "not terrible." Samadi says he intends to monitor Roker every six months to see if the size changes.
"I feel a certain sense of relief if you will," Roker said. "It really is all about knowing."
While the "Today" show crew couldn't help themselves with a bit of humor surrounding the procedure, they also dispensed some great information that should put anyone mulling a prostate examination a bit more at ease. With prostate cancer now the second-leading cause of cancer in the U.S. (with some 238,000 new cases diagnosed every year), a rectal exam in the easiest way to detect it early. As Dr. Drew Pinsky revealed in a post about his own prostate cancer fight, more than half of all men will have cancer in their prostate by age 80.
Check out video of Lauer and Roker's prostate exam on the video below.