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My prostate cancer “active surveillance” continues; biopsy in September

Posted May 07 2010 12:44am

I had another visit with my urologist this week. I was a bit spooked when my PSA showed 8.70. That’s high for a 56-year-old guy, and a big jump from where it has been. Both my doctors think it’s prostate inflammation. Yes, inflammation can kick the PSA up a few notches. I’ve had a bit of history with inflammation. My first PSA test, back in 2003, registered 4.9, a bit over the “normal” reading of 4 or below. At that time, I took antibiotics and the PSA came down to a more normal reading. Since then, my PSA has bounced up and down. 

Of greater importance is I’m going to have my third prosate biopsy this September. My urologist routinely does a repeat biopsy two years after the initial cancer diagnosis (that is if the original cancer is low-grade and confined to the prostate and follow-up tests are not troubling).

The September biopsy will be an important event in my prostate cancer journey. If the cancer shows a higher grade (more aggressive), my doctor and I will have to choose a treatment. This could be surgical removal of the prostate, radiation, or seed therapy.

My original cancer was determined to be low-grade and confined to the prostate. That was encouraging news, but with cancer, you need to keep being tested at regular intervals. A tumor can do what a tumor wants to do! It can go any which way.

So, I continue with active surveillance. On the one hand, an encouraging biopsy result in September will help put my mind at ease. A less encouraging result will mean I undergo treatment. And treatment means you get a chance to zap the cancer to pieces.

Either way, it could get interesting four or five months down the road.  It’s wait and see. My message always is to get screened, and if you have cancer, do what the doctor says and stay as healthy as you can!


Filed under: My prostate cancer
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