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What is prostate specific antigen and what is the treatment for high PSA levels?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2001
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I just had a blood sample taken as a result of a prostate exam. The lab told me that the PSA was 54.5. They told me that this was a very high number and would inform me what the next procedure I would need to do next. What is a PSA and what should they do next? I am 66 and taking 40mg lisinopril and 12.5 mg hydroclorot for high blood pressure
Posted Wed, 29 Jan 2014 in Cancer
Answered by Dr. Michelle Gibson James 29 minutes later
Brief Answer: Prostatic specific antigen Detailed Answer: HI, thanks for using healthcare magic PSA stands for prostate specific antigen. An antigen is a type of protein, in this case , this particular protein is released by the prostate gland. PSA values go up as men age because of benign prostatic hypertrophy (non cancerous enlargement of the prostate). It can also increase as a result of cancer of the prostate. Though sometimes the normal range of PSA is affected by age, in general , a normal value is less than 4. Your value of 54.5 is above the normal limit and would require further testing. Normally a prostatic biopsy would be the next test suggested. This involves removing small samples of the prostate to be sent to the lab for analysis. The lab would then be able to determine whether are any significant changes that are suggestive of cancer. The biopsy is commonly done via the rectum but there are also different methods. Additionally the doctor may also suggest an ultrasound to take a look at the prostate. It is possible that the increased value is not related to cancer but it has to be ruled out. If the news is not what you would want, it is important to remember there are effective treatments available. I hope this helps, feel free to ask any other questions
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