The Importance of PSA Testing

admin | PSA Testing

Why PSA Screening Remains an Essential Part of Physical Exams

Last fall the United States Preventive Services Task Force concluded that healthy men should no longer be routinely tested for prostate cancer using the prostate-specific antigen, or PSA, blood test because it often leads to treatments that needlessly diminish quality of life.

PSA is the only clinically-available study which can detect occult prostate cancers. It is imperative to find prostate cancers before they spread beyond the confines of the gland. The objection of the USPSTF was that it led to unnecessary treatment of prostate cancers that might not ever become life-threatening. Therefore prostate cancers that are not necessarily life threatening receive treatment that might significantly alter the quality of life. The objective is to find a treatment that does not impair quality of life, yet eliminates the tumor. If there was a treatment that could preserve the quality of life, but eradicate the tumor, PSA testing would remain useful.

Such a treatment does exist: HIFU or High Intensity Focused Ultrasound. HIFU is a treatment that provides a cure rate that is equivalent to surgery or radiation but has a minimal impact on potency and the development of post-treatment urinary incontinence. The cure rates of patients treated with HIFU when compared to radiation and radical prostatectomy are equivalent if the degree of … Read entire post

Why HIFU?

Peter Sinaiko MD FACS | HIFU Therapy

I have been treating prostate cancer for over 35 years using every available modality during that period of time to treat thousands of patients. Today HIFU, High Intensity Focused Ultrasound, represents the ultimate prostate cancer treatement because it is applicable in nearly every instance where prostate cancer is limited to the prostate gland without distant spread. It works in a way that preserves a patient’s quality of life and allows him to rapidly return to his pre-treatment vitality.

First let me explain what HIFU is and how it works. HIFU harnesses ultrasound in such a way that it can be used to destroy prostate cancer tissue. It does so by means of heating the tissue to a temperature for a period of time that will allow the destruction of the living cells that comprise the prostate and the prostate cancer. Once these cells are converted to a “proteinaceous slurry,” they no longer pose a risk to the host. This is accomplished by placing an ultrasound probe capable of emitting high-powered ultrasound in the rectum. Converging ultrasound beams, created by a transrectal probe travels through the tissue until it reaches the prostate. At that point the beams converge creating the heat necessary to destroy tissue. These beams are absolutely harmless to the patient until they converge in the prostate. Each convergence … Read entire post