The premature use of some medical innovations has led to unintended negative consequences. One example of unintended consequences was Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) screening for prostate cancer. Without a full understanding of PSA normal values there was indiscriminate over use of prostate biopsies. Frequently these biopsies diagnosed nonaggressive prostate cancers which cause no harm. As a result, thousands of men underwent unnecessary treatments.
In every Urology practice today, refined use of PSA testing is an important component in assessing for prostate cancer. PSA baseline, PSA Progression, PSA Density and PSA analogs are key in evaluating men at risk of cancer. After prostate cancer treatment PSA is the gold standard monitoring blood test.
Men with high risk for prostate cancer benefit from a diagnostic MRI. Prostate MRI decides which men to biopsy, defines the size and location of the suspicious nodule(s) to biopsy, predicts the grade of malignancy and locally stages the cancers. For prostate MRI to be accurate the exam has to be high quality imaging and interpreted by an experienced radiologist. Prostate MRIs are 90% accurate in diagnosing prostate cancer. Prostate cancers when diagnosed in their early stages with PSA and MRI can be treated and cured.