That mean ole conniving PSA…he’s worse than Mr. Prostate Cancer!

That mean ole conniving PSA...he's worse than Mr. Prostate Cancer!

Things a doctor would not do….have a prostate cancer test

PSA is a “simple” blood test to check for prostate cancer. Know what it stands for? Prostate Specific Antigen. Or rather, as many doctors will tell you, Persistent Stress and Anxiety.

Prostate cancer is far more common – and, usually, less serious – than most people realise. In elderly men, it’s virtually a state of normality. Most of these prostate cancers lie dormant and harmless, and are something men die with, not of. So having a PSA may end up giving you information you would have been better off not knowing. That’s if you can trust the result: it’s notorious for inaccuracies, with false positives, false negatives and an inability to distinguish between harmless pussycat prostate cancers and the less common aggressive tigers.

Which is why, when men ask for the test, they’re potentially opening Pandora’s box. We try to guide them through the maze of ifs, buts and maybes. Sure, in theory it could save your life. But in practice it could well lead to worry, unpleasant biopsies and unnecessary, traumatic surgery.
Tony Copperfield, GP and author of Sick Notes

2 Replies to “That mean ole conniving PSA…he’s worse than Mr. Prostate Cancer!”

  1. So, after reading the last post I have a question.
    Was I wrong in allowing my prostate to be removed whence my care givers diagnosed me with psa’s that ranged from 4.5 to 12.8? Thru the procedures of biopsies cancer was discovered. Did I in fact need to go thru the removal operation?
    I actually do feel better since. Is this really physical or is it psycological?


  2. Answering Mr. Herzog: This old PCa can get REALLY physical and psychological…if you don’t catch it in time. Dr. Copperfield, GP author of “Sick Notes” and your care givers may have mentioned that prostate health is a big deal. A matter of life and death. My doctors did not.

    After several DRE’s in my 50’s, had 1st PSA testing at age 60. GP sent a postcard: “PSA screening test = 3.72 The normal range is 4-10. So this result is just fine!” Age 67, urination slow, some pain. See the urologist… “Sorry…one node swollen.” PSA 150+, Gleason 8. “Terminal. Can only give treatment that MAY slow it, MAY reduce pain.” 5-20 years chopped off a lifespan because my ignorance of the fatal nature of metastatic PCa, and the lady GP not suggesting that the age 60 PSa test be a baseline, and to have another test in a year or two. If you like living, you can thank your lucky stars and understanding caregivers combined to give you the choice you had. (assume PSA, it’s rate/velocity of increase, DRE, and biopsy all led to the surgery decision) Otherwise you would join the some 30,000 men each year who don’t catch the cancer in time, or have effective treatment before it spreads from the prostate. Unfortunately for them, as you may know, the standard, palliative, treatment is not sweetness & light.

    Doctors beat around the bush, but the standard treatment will one day be thought to be right up there with leeches and such; barbaric, unknowing, The standard treatment is: ADT & bone medicines. ADT is code for medical castration. This regimen of treatment always results in impotence/ED, a fat belly, the atrophy/shrinking of muscle and genital tissue, severe fatigue, etc. At some point the cancer progresses, half the time leading to severe bone pain and a “SRE”-Skeletal Realted Event. Or spreads to vital oragn. End of game.

    I hope you have the good fortune to skip any grim treatments/results! . All best wishes, Rich Greiner

    My advice, as you will guess, to my men friends and relatives, in regard to the current PSA screening controversy….”Just do it…”


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