First of all, don’t panic. Many other factors including Benign Prostate Hyperplasia (BPH) can elevate PSA. But don’t ignore this either. Elevated PSA (greater than 4 or rising quickly over the last reading) is an early warning sign to investigate further.
Now we’re going to discuss the next steps: Investigate, Validate, Give a Clean Bill of Health or Initiate a Treatment/Surveillance Plan.
New Way (mpMRI)
- Have your prostate imaged using MRI.
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scans and reliably detects whether a tumor is present or not.
- Proven and used by nearly every leading research hospital in the developed countries of the world.
- Brings peace of mind by confirming that there is no cancer.
- If your MRI does not indicate a suspect tumor, then you may have no need to biopsy in most cases.
- If a tumor is suspected, your physician will likely recommend a biopsy.
- Most MRI systems use an endo-rectal probe for prostate MRI, an MRI antenna that inserts into the rectum; and it is expensive.
- This is no longer necessary. FirstScan uses a novel ScanMed wearable prostate MRI antenna for scanning while you lay comfortably in the MRI system – non-invasively!
- FirstScan charges a nominal flat fee for your scan and interpretation.
If the MRI indicates a suspicious tumor is present, then a biopsy may be necessary. The purpose of the biopsy is to take a tissue sample of the suspect lesion for lab analysis. We suggest Image Guided Biopsies as it provides your physician with more information regarding where a suspect tumor may be located. You have to see the target to hit it! MRI and Fusion (MRI plus Ultrasound) guided biopsies are available at an increasing number of locations.
The FirstScan image and report will be applicable for your guided biopsy, if needed.
If warranted, your doctor may recommend treatment, or may instead put you on an active surveillance program. If your biopsy indicates cancer, you have many options provided that you caught this in the early stages – exactly the purpose of the MRI!
Again, don’t panic. Early stage prostate cancer is beatable and treatable. Organ and functional sparing options are becoming more readily available every year. Talk to your physician about these options before you agree to more aggressive treatments!