Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Prostate Cancer Screening

New test detecting prostate cancer are better helping help doctors decided treatment plans for patients. Instead of just looking a single proteins such as P.S.A. these new test look at genetic markers. The old test would detect cancers that were unlikely to cause harm. Making patients go through chemotherapy which would lead to other complications. Infact the United States Preventive Services Task Force, a government advisory body recommended not getting the test that just checks for the single protein.


"It's not that screening doesn't work; it's that we haven't done a great job of targeting treatments for the tumors that need it," said Dr. Matthew R. Cooperberg, an assistant professor of urology at the University of California, San Francisco who has been a consultant to some of the testing companies.


An example was given of a man who got the old test done and have low P.S.A. levels so doctors decided not to treat him. The man instead that there was something wrong with his body. Doctors decided to do the new test and the cancer was found to be more aggressive than taught.

This is a perfect example about being your own advocate for your health. A family friend went to the doctor five times before a doctor did a biopsy when he was diagnosed with mouth cancer.



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