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When the prostate cancer makers was found to be abnormally high

  • Cancer
  • Read Time - 3 Min

When the prostate cancer makers (Prostate-specific antigen: PSA) was found to be abnormally high

What is prostate gland?
“Prostate gland” is one of the male reproductive organs located at the neck of the bladder. The prostate produce and secretes fluid which provide nutrient and energy vehicle for sperm.

Enlarged prostate
The prostate will continue to grow, even though reaching full adulthood. The older you get, the larger the prostate will grow. 

Enlarged prostate symptoms
•    Frequent urination, urinate more than twice each night 
•    Unable to hold urine for long, have to strain to urinate or wait longer than usual once feel the urge to urinate. 
•    When urine comes out, it flows intermittently, with the feeling that urinating is not complete.

Rectal Examination (PR)
PR stands for “per rectal”, an examination used to determine approximate size of the prostate gland. Generally, doctors will put on medical gloves coated with lubricating gel then slide the finger into the rectum to palpate the approximate size of the prostate gland. 

Prostate cancer prevention
• Avoid foods that are high in animal fats.
(Because these types of fat are at risk of developing prostate cancer)

Common screening test for prostate cancer in men aged 50-70
• Palpate prostate or PR (per rectal examination)
• Transabdominal or transrectal ultrasound
• A blood test to detect prostate cancer markers (Prostate Specific Antigen, PSA)

Prostate cancer is a slow-growing cancer. It took more than ten years to reach a dangerous stage.  Most of patients die from other diseases before prostate cancer is detected. 

Even though, good researches in Europe has found that early screening and early treatment of prostate cancer can reduce mortality rate by approximately 20%, but at the cost of pain, unnecessary additional examinations and premature treatment without knowing the results of weighing risk versus benefit. 

Since the currently available evidence is inconclusive on whether which side of beliefs should be relied on. Therefore, the screening for prostate cancer with PSA blood test must be the patient's own decision where doctors can only provide information. In the event that the examination has already been done and showed the abnormal result, the doctor and the patient must sit down together to thoroughly understand the meaning of the examination results, and make a decision together which way to go between the two options: which are 
     1. Wait and see, don't do anything invasive yet, just follow the PSA level and prostate size from rectal examination and prostate ultrasound examination according to the annual physical examination cycle as usual until there is an evidence showing the higher level of PSA or the larger prostate gland or any abnormal condition seen, then move on to a prostate biopsy to collect a number of tissue samples from prostate gland for further examination. 
      2. Don’t wait, move on to collect tissue samples from prostate gland for examination. If the prostate biopsy result shows the presence of prostate cancer then move on to surgery for prostate cancer treatment. 
Either approaches, there isn't enough evidence to determine which one is better.  Patients therefore have to make their own choices.