Navigation Links
New finding suggests prostate biopsy is not always necessary
Date:11/6/2009

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. Researchers at Wake Forest University School of Medicine and the University of Wisconsin-Madison have discovered that some elevated prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels in men may be caused by a hormone normally occurring in the body, and are not necessarily a predictor of the need for a prostate biopsy.

Elevated levels of PSA have traditionally been seen as a potential sign of prostate cancer, leading to the widespread use of PSA testing. However, the researchers found that parathyroid hormone, a substance the body produces to regulate calcium in the blood, can elevate prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels in healthy men who do not have prostate cancer. These "non-cancer" elevations in PSA could cause many men to be biopsied unnecessarily, which often leads to unnecessary treatment.

"PSA picks up any prostate activity, not just cancer," said lead investigator Gary G. Schwartz, Ph.D., M.P.H., an associate professor of cancer biology and epidemiology and prevention at the School of Medicine. "Inflammation and other factors can elevate PSA levels. If the levels are elevated, the man is usually sent for a biopsy. The problem is that, as men age, they often develop microscopic cancers in the prostate that are clinically insignificant. If it weren't for the biopsy, these clinically insignificant cancers, which would never develop into fatal prostate cancer, would never be seen."

However, because PSA screening has become so common, more men are being biopsied, Schwartz said. Most men, when told that they have prostate cancer, elect treatment even though it may not be necessary. In reality, Schwartz said, in only one of six cases does a biopsy diagnosis of prostate cancer result in a cancer that would be fatal if untreated.

High rates of prostate biopsy, therefore, lead to the over treatment of prostate cancer, he said, leading to an increased rate of the side effects of treatment, including impotence and urinary incontinence.

The study, coauthored by Halcyon G. Skinner, Ph.D., M.P.H., of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, appears in the current issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

For the study, the researchers analyzed data from 1,273 men who participated in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2005-2006, and who did not report any current infection or inflammation of the prostate gland, prostate biopsy in the past month, or history of prostate cancer at the time of the survey.

After adjusting for age, race and obesity because PSA levels increase with age, are higher in black men, and are lower in overweight men the researchers found that the higher the level of parathyroid hormone in the blood, the higher the PSA level. In men whose parathyroid level was at the high end of normal, the PSA level was increased by 43 percent putting many in the range for the urologist to recommend a biopsy.

The finding is especially significant for black men, added Skinner. About 20 percent of black men have elevated parathyroid hormone levels, compared with about 10 percent of white men which means blacks have a greater chance of being recommended for biopsy and over treated, he said.

This finding "could help scientists refine the prostate cancer screening test to better differentiate between those men who need to be biopsied and those who might be spared the procedure," Schwartz said. "It's likely that there are a lot of men out there with elevated PSAs that may be due to elevated parathyroid hormone rather than prostate cancer."

Parathyroid hormone is made by cells of the parathyroid glands, four small glands embedded in the thyroid. Although parathyroid hormone primarily controls calcium levels in the blood, recent research has shown that parathyroid hormone can promote prostate cancer cell growth. The research by Schwartz and Skinner is the first to suggest that parathyroid hormone also promotes prostate cell growth in men without prostate cancer.


'/>"/>

Contact: Jessica Guenzel
jguenzel@wfubmc.edu
336-716-3487
Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Research Findings Key for Understanding, Interpreting Genetic Testing for Long QT Syndrome
2. Finding Ways for Disabled People to Participate in Research is Goal of Case Western Reserve University Nursing School Study
3. Contour Products Promotes Survey for National Respiratory Care Week, Findings Prove Benefits of Contour CPAP Pillow for Sleep Apnea Patients
4. Study finds delay in follow-up among African-American women receiving abnormal breast finding
5. New findings on the formation of body pigment
6. Findings about veracity of peripheral vision could lead to better robotic eyes
7. Interleukin Genetics to Present Research Findings at Upcoming Medical Meetings
8. New findings about brain proteins suggest possible way to fight Alzheimers
9. Corn Refiners Association Comments on Findings in Recent Report on Sugars and High Blood Pressure
10. World Heart Day resonates with recent experts findings on CVD and EU institutions determination to promote heart health
11. Louisiana's TCA Cellular Therapy's Findings Reported at World Stem Cell Summit -- Patients' Legs Saved from Amputation Using Adult Stem Cells
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... , ... Ellevate Network, the leading network for professional women, brought together some ... at their inaugural Summit in New York City in June. The event was livestreamed ... over 3 million. To watch the Mobilize Women video, click here . ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... 13, 2017 , ... Coveros, a leader in agile coaching ... contract by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The Enterprise Agile ... of Agile methodologies in a consistent and high value manner across CMS programs. ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 12, 2017 , ... CitiDent and San Francisco dentists, Dr. ... Oventus O2Vent technology. As many as 18 million Americans are estimated to suffer ... Oral appliances can offer significant relief to about 75 percent of people with ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... The American ... Excellence to Carol Friedman, PhD, FACMI, during the Opening Session of AMIA’s Annual Symposium ... 8. , In honor of Morris F. Collen, a pioneer in the field of ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... HMP , a leader ... a 2017 Folio Magazine Eddie Digital Award for ‘Best B-to-B Healthcare Website.’ Winners were ... 11, 2017. , The annual award competition recognizes editorial and design excellence across a ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/11/2017)... , Oct. 11, 2017  Hill-Rom Holdings, Inc. ("Hill-Rom") ... Surgical facility in Las Piedras, Puerto Rico ... and blades. ... the facility sustained minor structural damage, temporary loss of ... Repairs have been completed, manufacturing operations have resumed, and ...
(Date:10/4/2017)... , Oct. 4, 2017  South Korean-based healthcare product ... training aide "cprCUBE" on Kickstarter. The device will educate ... cardiac arrests with better efficiency compared to the dated ... real-time feedback on efficacy of the compression for a ... has a goal to raise $5,000. ...
(Date:10/2/2017)...  AllianceRx Walgreens Prime, the combined central specialty pharmacy ... benefit manager Prime Therapeutics LLC (Prime), today officially began ... unveiling of new signage at its headquarters in ... a few other company-owned facilities across the country. This ... of whom will begin to see the AllianceRx Walgreens ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: