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Prostate cancer tests, PSAs

PSAs and Prostate Cancer Treatments

Finally! Men are now getting the true lowdown about prostate cancer treatment.

For several years, in the e-Alert and the HSI Members Alert, we’ve stressed the importance of not rushing into invasive prostate cancer treatments. Even biopsies are often unnecessary and can prompt painful infections and incontinence.

Last week, the mainstream media finally came around. Even the major TV networks carried reports about a new prostate cancer study from the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center.

When researchers examined the cases of about 24,800 men with lower-risk prostate cancer, they found that more than 13,500 opted for immediate surgery or radiation therapy. The UM team concluded that diligent monitoring of prostate cancer symptoms would have been a better first step.

Author of the study, John T. Wei, M.D., told Ivanhoe Newswire, “For some men with early-stage prostate cancer, surgery or radiation therapy may result in substantial negative effects without a survival benefit.”

Well put!

Here’s how I wrapped up an e-Alert earlier this year: “Men take note: Never trust a single PSA test, and never EVER allow a doctor to perform a biopsy based on a single test.”

For the details that back up that statement, see the e-Alert “Test Busters” (1/25/06), which you can find at this link: