Experts can’t seem to agree about whether to use PSA testing to screen for prostate cancer.

Earlier this week, another “blue ribbon” medical panel recommended that physicians stop using PSAs altogether.  This is the second time in less than six months that the medical community has dissed using PSA testing–or any prostate cancer screening test for that matter–claiming that testing led to expensive and harmful over-treatment.

I summarized the latest assault on CancerNews.US on Tuesday:

IMPORTANT NEWS: PSA screening for prostate cancer on the way out

But of course, not everyone agrees.  Read these excerpts from yesterday’s L.A. Times:

Steve Lopez: A second opinion about the PSA prostate cancer test

May 23, 2012

So the PSA test for prostate cancer should be abandoned, according to a government advisory panel?

Not in the opinion of highly regarded Santa Monica urologist Milton Krisiloff, who was my doctor in the late 1990s when I lived on that side of town.

“I think the PSA is an excellent test when it’s used properly,” said Krisiloff.

As reported this week, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has concluded that few lives are saved by PSA screening. But when cancer is detected, 90% of men are treated with surgery or radiation even though most tumors are not life-threatening, and that can  lead to avoidable impotence and incontinence, among other problems.

That’s true, said Krisiloff, and doctors should  be more discriminating in recommending aggressive treatment for non-aggressive cancer, or for high PSAs, which don’t necessarily indicate cancer. But he said more and more urologists have changed their ways in the last decade and are taking what he calls “an active surveillance” approach.

With a high PSA, Krisiloff recommends doing a follow-up PSA after six months and a biopsy every year or two. “At a later date, if the tumor manifests as more aggressive,” the patient can still be saved with more radical treatment at that time, Krisiloff said…

Read what Dr. Krisiloff recommends for patients with urinary or prostate issues that don’t require “radical treatment” by CLICKING HERE.

Having options is normally good for patients.  But in this case, confusion caused by a medical community that can’t seem to make up it’s mind isn’t helping!  I will keep you updated as all of this gets sorted out.

Feel good and keep smiling!  Pat

 

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