My latest PSA came in at an alarming 1.6 which represents a doubling of value in the past nine months. Many of the readers of this entry will realize that a doubling of one's post-treatment PSA within a period of one year is generally associated with biological failure or recurrence and an indication of aggressive progression. My initial reaction has been one of extreme anxiety. Once again, I thought, my quality of life is under attack. A limited research effort served only to reinforce this deep-seated fear.
Then comes a spirited data exchange between me and my case manager at UFPTI. The most recent UFPTI standard, she advised me, focuses on (1) each patient's PSA baseline, i.e., the first result immediately following the cessation of treatment* and (2) a patient's PSA trendline over an extended period. She regards the doubling of my PSA over the past nine months as a short-term phenomenon and therefore relatively inconsequential. Furthermore, she reiterated, " I see nothing unusal or out of line with your PSA history".
Based on our conversation my state of panic has subsided substantially, although I admit to a wee bit of skepticism. In action and in deed I will consider myself as having dodged another bullet, that is, until and unless I receive clear evidence to the contrary. My next regularly scheduled PSA is due in April.
*My baseline score of 2.41 provides a degree of reassurance.