Cost of PSA Test

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Buzzdriver
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 5/3/2010 10:28 PM (GMT -6)   
nono   I just got the bill for the PSA test that I pretty much forgot to get...
 
We're all getting this simple one-tube blood draw for PSA and I also check for Free PSA as I know many of you do.
 
I just changed insurance companies and plans, so now I actually see the bills - shame on me I guess for not knowing, but just wonder what the range is?
 
My Laboratory Fees were $374.00; and the "Phlebotomy Fee (needle stick)" was $147.00.  I live just West of Chicago in one of the 'burbs. 
 
What are the rest of you seeing in your bills for this 2 minute stick and 5 minute assay?
 
Buzz
Age 54 at DX.  Gleason 6, PSA 4.2, a .78 rise in one year. 
 
Had High Dose rate brachytherapy at California Endocurie Therapy Center in Oakland, CA in February of '06.  Very successful - PSA came down quickly and steadily to current .08.  No problems.
 
Developed flow restriction in summer of '08 - had bladder neck resection in March of '09 - immediately incontinent, immediately in severe and constant pain, ultimately left job because I could not function because of pain and incontinence.
 
Started hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) three weeks ago (October '09) - pain virtually gone, blood in urine down to "trace" levels, still pretty leaky.  HBOT has been a godsend with respect to reducing the pain! 
 
Began working with a physical therapist in December - had "trigger point" therapy on pelvic floor muscles.  This proved successful in getting better control of incontinence - now many days I could go all day on one pad - but usually would use two.
 
I use an "AlphaDry" system at work - it is an external condom style catheter with a reservoir which allows me to use the men's room "standing up."  The other benefit is not carrying a bag of pads to the office every day, and finding a quick and discreet way to do a change if and when needed.
 


Tony Crispino
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 7584
   Posted 5/3/2010 10:38 PM (GMT -6)   
Buzz,
You really need to question that bill. I am working on a Nevada State grant for 21g to test 500 men for fathers day. It would not test 40 men where you had it done. I know the typical cost of a PSA test should be around 85 bucks, less when done in bulk like we will be. I wouldn't complain below 125. But 521.00 bucks is totally and completely out of line and I would consider talking to your state attorney general and reporting these guys.

The parent office for UsTOO International is located in Chicago. Tom Kirk is the President. You might contact him and ask what to do, and see if he might be able to help.

Tony Crispino
Chapter President
UsTOO Las Vegas
Prostate Cancer Education and Support
Disease:
Advanced Prostate Cancer at age 44 (I am 47 now)
pT3b,N0,Mx (original PSA was 19.8) EPE, PM, SVI. Gleason 4+3=7

Treatments:
LARP ~ 2/17/2007 at the City of Hope near Los Angeles.
Adjuvant Radiation Therapy ~ IMRT Completed 8/07
Adjuvant Hormone Therapy ~ 28 months on Casodex and Lupron.

Status:
"I beat up this disease and took its lunch money! I am in remission."
I am currently not being treated, but I do have regular oncology visits.
I am the president of an UsTOO chapter in Las Vegas

Blog : www.caringbridge.org/visit/tonycrispino

Post Edited (TC-LasVegas) : 5/3/2010 9:41:20 PM (GMT-6)


Worried Guy
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 3220
   Posted 5/4/2010 5:45 AM (GMT -6)   
Buzz,
Welcome to Healing Well.

about three months ago this question came up as part of a discussiion about getting results to 1 vs 2 decimal places.
We compared the price of a Diagnostic PSA (2 decimal, and a Screening PSA (1 decimal ) and found them to be virtually identical: between $50 to $100. Surprisingly one lab actually charged less for the diagnostic test. My wife called labs in Rochester NY and other guys did their area.
The Phelobotomy charge ranged from $15 to $25 (or maybe 30, I don't remember)

We did not test free PSA but it cannot be much more.

Call the lab. They might have added a $225 walletectomy charge by mistake or maybe you bought the three test package deal. ;-)

Jeff
Married 34 years, DX Age 56. First routine PSA test on April 8, 09: 17.8. Start 2 weeks of Cipro to rule out protatitis. May '09 PSA: 22.6, 3 weeks later: PSA: 23.2.
Biopsy 6/10/09: 7/12 scores positive, 20%-70%, Gleason 6=3+3. Bone and C/T scans neg.
RP DaVinci -7/21/2009 @ Univ of Roch Medical Center
Left nerve gone, right partial spared.
Catheter removed - 7/31/2009 Pathology report received:
Gleason 3+4=7, Tumor size: 2.5 x 1.8 cm, location: both lobes and apex.
Extraprostatic extension present; Perineural invasion: present, extensive.
No Malignancy in Seminal Vesicle, vasa deferentia, lymph nodes 0/13
Prostate mass 56 grams. Pathologic Stage: pT3aN0MX
Post Surgery Status:
Potency - 12/11 5 months, Still no activity, zip. Using pump daily since 11/11. No effect with 20 mg of Cialis or 100 mg of Viagra. Shots next See Uro 1/22/10 Trimix #1. Try 0.08- 25%, 0.12-25%, 2/26/10 try 0.16 First Success! 90%.
Incontinence - 8/20 4 full pads per day
.. 9/7 3-4 full pads per day. Try controlling fluids.
12/11/09 5 months: 3 pads per day, 400-450ml/day
02/26/10 7 months: 3 pads but leak is now 320 ml (5 day avg.)
03/22/10 8 months: 3 pads per day, 280 ml/day (5 day avg.) PT says all muscles are tight and working properly. There must be another issue. Uro mtg 4/23. Did I waste 9 months? Mtg 5/22.
Post Surgery PSA - 9/3 6 weeks - 0.05; 10/13 3 months - 0.04, 1/14 6 months - 0.05, 4/14 9 months - 0.04 and <0.01 with ECLIA.


Sephie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 1779
   Posted 5/4/2010 6:19 AM (GMT -6)   
Buzz, these costs seem a bit extreme even for a major metropolitan area. Heck, my mammogram costs less than that! I would question the cost especially the $147 fee phlebotomy fee (that's outrageous for something that takes 2 minutes)!
Husband diagnosed in 2/2008 at age 57 with stage T1c. Robotic surgery performed 3/2008. Stage upgraded to T3a (solitary focus of extraprostatic extension). Perineural tumor infiltration present. Apex margin, bladder neck and SVs negative. Final Gleason 3+4. PSA: 0.0 til July 2009. August 2009 - 0.1, September 0.3, October back to 0.0, December 0.0, March 2010 0.0. Next PSA in 6 months. Thank you God!


Steve n Dallas
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 3961
   Posted 5/4/2010 6:24 AM (GMT -6)   
My Laboratory Fees were $374.00
 
Odds are that you'll see the insurance company say something like-> Charges reduced by $300.00 per agreement.
Age 55   - 5'11"   215lbs
Overall Heath Condition - Good
PSA - July 2007 & Jan 2008 -> 1.3
Biopsy - 03/04/08 -> Gleason 6 
06/25/08 - Da Vinci robotic laparoscopy
05/14/09  - 4th Quarter PSA -> less then .01
11/20/09 - 18 Month PSA -> less then .01
Surgeon - Keith A. Waguespack, M.D.


Worried Guy
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 3220
   Posted 5/4/2010 7:32 AM (GMT -6)   
Steve N Dallas
Steve said...
Odds are that you'll see the insurance company say something like-> Charges reduced by $300.00 per agreement.

And some top dog will claim 20% of the $300 for negotiating such a good deal for the "non-profit'.

Pennsylvania's top two Health care execs, Melani (Highmark) and Frick (Independence), got $3.6 million and $2.78 Million respectively in 2008.
Ridiculous/criminal/excessive/fraud... You decide.

Jeff

JoeyG
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 144
   Posted 5/4/2010 10:58 AM (GMT -6)   
That cost is more than excessive. It is this type of thing that really angers me because if you don't have insurance, you have to foot the entire bill.
 
My insurance pays $24 for psa tests. The lab charges, about $100.
 
Get this one: The lab charged $3,000 to read my last biopsy.My insurer paid $240.00. Without health insurance many people die for a reason.
Age -57; Diagnosed 10/05 PSA 13.4 GS 7 (4+3) Organ confined (T2B)
Cryoablation 4/06 Allegheny Hosp-Dr Ralph Miller (Cohen/Miller)
Post Cryo Nadir 8/06 0.2
Rising steadily to 0.7 4/09 :-(
Steady at 0.7 (7/09)
Doubled to 1.5 (2/10) YUCH!
Hoping to qualify for salvage cryo or radiation


RayPat
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 104
   Posted 5/4/2010 11:23 AM (GMT -6)   
My PSA at my primary doc was $110. The second that the urologist did was $34.
For my biopsy the urologist fee and the surgical clinic's bill was $660 but the lab and pathologist bills were $2000.
I found out that my el cheapo hospital/surgical plan would pay for the biopsy so I had them file a claim.
The clinic and doc's bill went to $1678 even though I had already paid them the medicare rate they quoted when they thought I was uninsured. If my insurance doesn't pay I'll be billed for the difference.
Age 63
Frequent urination for 10 years but never saw a doctor.
01/26/10 talked to doctor who did blood work...PSA 9
Referred to urologist
Met urologist on 2/26/10....DRE normal new PSA test was 11. Taken after DRE.
Biopsy on 3/26/10. 14 samples...3 positive on right side...all 11% Gleason 3+3
Urologist said stage T-1c.
Advised treatment. Discussed surgery and set appointment with radiologist for 4/26/10
4/26/10 Met with radiologist. Confirmed urologist's opinion that it's gland confined but suspects real stage is T-2. Thinks IMRT or Brachytherapy would be good choice.


JB71
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 200
   Posted 5/4/2010 11:59 AM (GMT -6)   
WOW !! I guess while living in Ontario and with the benefits of our OHIP (government) program, I forget what it might be like if I lived elsewhere and had to pay..

Here, although PSA tests are NOT covered by the program (still quite a controversy) I did pay $ 20.00 for every test, over the last 15 years. However, once you have been diagnosed with PC cancer, all the followup tests are then FREE!

Sounds nice compared to what Buzzdriver is being charged but I truly wished I was still paying the
twenty bucks.
Age, only 71.
July 2009, PSA 9.1, free ratio 0.16
September GLEASON 4+4=8, T2A
Prostate 44cc.
Calcium: 2.46  (range: 2.20 - 2.65 mmol/L)
25 Hydroxy Vitamin D: 102 (range: sufficiency:
76 - 250 nmol/L)
Bone Scan: Negative
CT Scan scheduled for Dec. 1st. Negative.
Started Casodex 50mg. on Nov. 6, first pill of 30.
Got Lupron 22.5mg ( 90 day ) on  November 19.
No real side effects as of Dec. 15 except dry skin and hair but getting quite 'porky' in the belt area even though now I go to the gym, three times a week. Also I dont have a need to shave anymore so now I can save my 'shaving' allowance and direct it to my stash of Depends !
 
Christmas Day got my first hot flashes. Thanks Santa!
 
Open surgery done on Jan. 20th. by Dr. J. Chin at London's University Hospital.
 
Cath removel scheduled for Feb. 8th. Yes, I know,
that will be 19 days. Dr. is out of country until then.
====================================
Pathology Report:
 
Gleason Score: cannot be determined due to hormone therapy effects. ???????
Extraprostatic Extension:
present, left radial, multifocal
present, left basal, multifocal
Resection Margins:
Apical: involved by invasive carcinoma, multifocal
Bladder Neck: involved by invasive carcinoma, unifocal on left side.Other: non-tumoural prostatic present at resection margin.
Perineural Invasion: present.
Seminal Vesicle Invasion: absent
Lymphovascular Invasion: absent
Lymph Node Status: no malignancy in regional lymph nodes
Additional path. findings:
high grade prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia
 
Pathology Stage: yp T3a NO MX
==================================
Radialogist appointment was on Friday Feb. 26 with Dr. Glenn Bauman in London.
Got another Lupron 90 day shot today and he wants to start IMRT soon. CT Scan plus measure scheduled in about 3 weeks. ( march 15)
 
First PSA test since surgery on March 18th.
with the results of <0.03 !!!
 
Started a Facebook page for bikers with prostate issues at:
 
IMRT to start on May 10.
 
.


rob2
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 923
   Posted 5/4/2010 4:09 PM (GMT -6)   
My urologist charges less than $30 for a PSA test.

Interesting comments about "charges reduced by agreement". My surgery cost $8000 but reduced by 6,000 "due to agreement". It is similar to having a grocery store card. If you have the card your check out is XXX, without they are YYY. Perhaps the insurance companies can just have one charge for all and reduce the pay of the health carre execs.
 
Age 48 at diagnosis
occupation accountant
PSA increased from 2.6 to 3.5 in one year
biopsy march 2008 - cancer present gleason 7
Robotic Surgery May 9, 2008 - houston, tx
Pathology report -gleason 8, clear margins
22 month  PSA <.04
continent at 10 weeks (no pads!)
ED is still an issue


Worried Guy
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 3220
   Posted 5/4/2010 4:41 PM (GMT -6)   
Rob,
I'm with you.
1)Standardize and publish the costs.
2)Reduce the salaries of non profit execs.
3)Get rid of a few while you are at it.

Don't know where you live but it might be instructive if we all looked up the salaries of the top Health care execs in our states. Shameful.

And just in case Dr Melani is reading this, do you honestly feel you deserved that $3 million bonus? Why were they paying you a salary? Two million isn't enough?

Ok I'll get off my soapbox.
This topic certainly got my pee pads twisted in a bunch.
Jeff

Buzzdriver
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 5/4/2010 5:31 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks to all - and I'm absolutely going to follow up - I'll start with my primary care doc, as the PSA was done at the lab connected to his office and hospital association. 
 
Shame on me for not looking at these before, but I'm paying attention now.
 
Again, my thanks to everyone who responded. 
 
Buzz
Age 54 at DX.  Gleason 6, PSA 4.2, a .78 rise in one year. 
 
Had High Dose rate brachytherapy at California Endocurie Therapy Center in Oakland, CA in February of '06.  Very successful - PSA came down quickly and steadily to current .08.  No problems.
 
Developed flow restriction in summer of '08 - had bladder neck resection in March of '09 - immediately incontinent, immediately in severe and constant pain, ultimately left job because I could not function because of pain and incontinence.
 
Started hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) three weeks ago (October '09) - pain virtually gone, blood in urine down to "trace" levels, still pretty leaky.  HBOT has been a godsend with respect to reducing the pain! 
 
Began working with a physical therapist in December - had "trigger point" therapy on pelvic floor muscles.  This proved successful in getting better control of incontinence - now many days I could go all day on one pad - but usually would use two.
 
I use an "AlphaDry" system at work - it is an external condom style catheter with a reservoir which allows me to use the men's room "standing up."  The other benefit is not carrying a bag of pads to the office every day, and finding a quick and discreet way to do a change if and when needed.
 


Purgatory
Elite Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 23878
   Posted 5/4/2010 5:33 PM (GMT -6)   
Between my uro and the lab, the average charge for my PSA tests are $125, but our insurance pays 100% for it every time, then AFLAC pays me 75.00 for taking it, not a bad deal.
Age: 57, 56 dx, PSA: 7/07 5.8, 7/08 12.3, 9/08 14.5, 10/08 16.3
3rd Biopsy: 9/08 - 7/7 Positive, 40-90% Cancer, Gleason 4+3
Open RP: 11/08, Rht nerves saved, 4 days in hospt, on catheters for 63 days, 5th one out 1/09
Path Rpt: Gleason 3+4, pT2c, 42g, 20% cancer, 1 pos margin
Incontinence:  1 Month     ED:  Non issue at any point post surgery, no problem post SRT
Post Surgery  PSA: 2/09 .05,5/09 .1, 6/09 .11. 8/09 .16
Post SRT PSA: 1/10 .12, 4/8 .04, next one:  July
Latest: 7/9 met 2 rad. oncl, 7/9 cath #6 - blockage, 8/9 2nd corr surgery, 8/9 cath #7 out 38 days, 9/9 - met 3rd rad. oncl., mapped  9/9, 10/1 - 3rd corr. surgery - SP cath/hard dialation, 10/5 - 11/27 IMRT SRT 39 sess/72 gys ,cath #8 33 days, Cath #9 35 days, 12/7 - Cath #10 43 days, 1/19 - Corr Surgery #4,  Caths #11 and #12  same time, 2/8-Cath #11 out - 21 days, 3/2- Cath #12 out - 41 days, 3/2- Corr Surgery #5, 3/6 Cath #13 out - 4 days, Cath #14- 27 days, Cath #15 - 26 days, Cath #16 - 4/23 put in


erbob
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 201
   Posted 5/4/2010 7:59 PM (GMT -6)   
Buzz, I'm not sure which of the many Chicago area western burbs you are in but I retired and moved from Naperville to Colorado back in 1995. In just less than three weeks, I'll be making the trip from Colorado to Westmont, IL (another burb) for a second prostate volume study to determine if I am now a good candidate for Brachy. First volume study indicated the prostate was a little too large for an effective Brachy treatment. I'll be going to The Chicago Prostate Cancer Center in Westmont, IL. I'm now wondering if you have ever been there for any procedures or even heard of the place? If I am "blessed" with the seeds, they will be the permanent type but the volume study may determine that I should first have IMRT prior to the seeds. I'll have to check to see what my PSA charge was - just had one about two weeks ago at one of our local annual "Health Fairs" and it was at an exceptionally reasonable cost.
Bob, down in Southern Colorado


Ed C. (Old67)
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 2319
   Posted 5/4/2010 8:41 PM (GMT -6)   
Buzz,
I think Medicare pays about $50.
Age: 67 at Dx on 12/30/08
PSA 9/05 1.15; 8/06 1.45; 12/07 2.41; 8/08 3.9; 11/08 3.5 free PSA 11%
2 cores out of 12 were positive Gleason (4+4) and (4+5)
Negative CT scan and bone scan done on 1/16
Robotic surgery performed 2/9/09 Dr Fagin, Austin TX
Pathology report:
Prostate weighed 57 grams size:5.2 x 5.0 x 4.9 cm
Posterior lateral lesions measuring 1.5 x 1.4 x 1.0 cm showing focal capsular penetration over a distance of 3mm in circumference.
Prostatic adenocarciroma accounts for approx. 10-20% of the hemisphere.
Gleason 4+4
both nerve bundles removed,
pT3a Nx Mx, Negative margins
seminal vesicles clean, lymph nodes: not dissected
continent after 5 months
2 months PSA test 4/7/09 result <0.1
5 months PSA test 7/9/09 result <0.1
8 months PSA test 10/9/09 result <0.1
11 months PSA test 1/21/10 result 0.004
14 months PSA test 4/19/10 result 0.005


goodlife
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 2593
   Posted 5/4/2010 9:23 PM (GMT -6)   
My hospital charges $134, inusrance pays $78 for a Roche Electrochemiluminescent ultra sensitiv assay.
Goodlife
 
Age 58, PSA 4.47 Biopsy - 2/12 cores , Gleason 4 + 5 = 9
Da Vinci, Cleveland Clinic  4/14/09   Nerves spared, but carved up a little.
0/23 lymph nodes involved  pT3a NO MX
Catheter and 2 stints in ureters for 2 weeks .
Neg Margins, bladder neck negative
Living the Good Life, cancer free  6 week PSA  <.03
3 month PSA <.01 (different lab)
5 month PSA <.03 (undetectable)
6 Month PSA <.01
1 pad a day, no progress on ED.  Trimix injection
No pads, 1/1/10,  9 month PSA < .01
1 year psa (364 days) .01


Casey59
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 3172
   Posted 5/5/2010 6:30 AM (GMT -6)   
TC-LasVegas said...
...I am working on a Nevada State grant for 21g to test 500 men for fathers day...I know the typical cost of a PSA test should be around 85 bucks, less when done in bulk like we will be...
 
Tony,
 
This sounds like a wonderful idea...it truly does have the potential to be powerful.  I'm wondering how your are also supplying the necessary and appropriate information about PSA testing and PC to your targetted participants.  Hopefully, the "decision aid" resources are a part of your grant budget as well.
 
Ya know, the whole ACS guideline "controversy" is centered right in this area.  Some people who failed to actually read the ACS guidelines (and read only the media coverage of the ACS guidelines) think that the American Cancer Society came out against PSA testing of men.  Of course, this is far from the truth. 
 
The basics of testing were unchanged in the new ACS guidelines, but the guidelines were specifically written to be clearly against the kind of "community screening" programs you might find in your office building's lobby or in a bus parked outside the YMCA—unless they have the infrastructure to handle the complicated pretest discussion and whatever follow-up is necessary.  The published guideline's words are: 
"Men should either receive this information directly from their healthcare providers or be referred to reliable and culturally appropriate sources."
An example of how this is being deployed, for example, is at M. D. Anderson where health fairs with an emphasis on education have replaced those mass screenings in the last couple of years.

The gist of what is new in the ACS guideline is a firm end to the notion, still held by some clinicians, that screening for prostate cancer is the same as colorectal cancer screening or cholesterol screening:

"There has to be a conversation," says John Davis, assistant professor in the department of urology at the M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. "And these [ACS] guidelines give some very nice bulleted points and Web links you could build into an information sheet and give to patients."

Hopefully, you budget includes the resources to provide the decision-aid/information as well as the screening test itself.

best regards...

 

Post Edited (Casey59) : 5/5/2010 7:15:24 AM (GMT-6)


engineer55
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 121
   Posted 5/5/2010 11:21 AM (GMT -6)   
I use quest and the bill after insurance adjustements was $22. Before insurance adjustments it was like $100.

I like getting the test done at outside places a week before your appointment because it is cheaper and they have results ready for your visit. Usually the wait is only a few minutes
Dx'ed 5/08 one core 2%  out of 12  3+3 gleason
DREs all negative
PSA was in the 3-4 range then jumped to 7
I have the enlarged prostate, on the order of 100cc.  After taking Avodart for 3 months  my
PSA was cut in half.
I did Active S for a year but concluded that I didn't want a life
of biopsies and Uro meetings.
DaVinci on 6/24/09  UCI Med Center  Dr Ahlering, long surgery based on size and location
Final was 5% one side all clear, but had a huge 90 grm prostate
Now we work on pee control, ok at night but sitting is a big problem.


engineer55
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 121
   Posted 5/5/2010 11:23 AM (GMT -6)   
Another thing to add, call your insurance company, they will tell you the cheapest place, they love doing that stuff, that is how they make money
Dx'ed 5/08 one core 2%  out of 12  3+3 gleason
DREs all negative
PSA was in the 3-4 range then jumped to 7
I have the enlarged prostate, on the order of 100cc.  After taking Avodart for 3 months  my
PSA was cut in half.
I did Active S for a year but concluded that I didn't want a life
of biopsies and Uro meetings.
DaVinci on 6/24/09  UCI Med Center  Dr Ahlering, long surgery based on size and location
Final was 5% one side all clear, but had a huge 90 grm prostate
Now we work on pee control, ok at night but sitting is a big problem.


142
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 5816
   Posted 5/5/2010 12:50 PM (GMT -6)   
Bostwick billed $90 for each of the PSA Complex and PSA Total, plus $15 for the blood handling. The Dr. also added on. However, after the Ins. co did their thing, I paid ~ $17.00

Tony Crispino
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 7584
   Posted 5/5/2010 3:14 PM (GMT -6)   
Casey,

I am very hopeful that we can convey the right message to anyone who shows up for testing. As an UsTOO chapter president, I take very seriously the need to provide education and support for those affected by prostate cancer. While I am vocally against the recent ACS announcements, it isn't because I disagree in total concept with them. It is because they are confusing and ambiguous enough to virtually everyone who reads them from doctors to patients.

For me the message is simple:
1> Testing may reveal a cancer that does not require immediate treatment.
2> It is better to be educated on prostate cancer before ever treating prostate cancer.
3> While testing will pick up many cases of the disease that don't need treatment, it is still better to know the threat than it is to ignore it.

I know men that will not be tested now because they have seen the ACS guidelines and have taken the attitude that testing is useless. The fact is that testing is the only manageable way of controlling and monitoring prostate cancer in the early stages. But the key is that there then needs to be an active support and education group trying to hit the newly diagnosed patients where the rubber meets the road ~ That is what our group and the ACS is supposed to be doing.

Our 21k grant is to provide a means for men on fathers day to get a free test that their family would like to encourage them to do, or that because of a terrible Las Vegas economy they lack the financial means to be tested. When we greet the men before they go in, they will receive information about testing, about UsTOO, how to receive local support and information, and a way to speak to informed survivors and the professionals at the Comprehensive Cancer Centers of Nevada.

I am fully aware that the ACS is against that. But they have been all over the place about cancer screenings in the last year and it reflects poor guidance and leadership in my book.

Peace,

Tony
Disease:
Advanced Prostate Cancer at age 44 (I am 47 now)
pT3b,N0,Mx (original PSA was 19.8) EPE, PM, SVI. Gleason 4+3=7

Treatments:
LARP ~ 2/17/2007 at the City of Hope near Los Angeles.
Adjuvant Radiation Therapy ~ IMRT Completed 8/07
Adjuvant Hormone Therapy ~ 28 months on Casodex and Lupron.

Status:
"I beat up this disease and took its lunch money! I am in remission."
I am currently not being treated, but I do have regular oncology visits.
I am the president of an UsTOO chapter in Las Vegas

Blog : www.caringbridge.org/visit/tonycrispino

Post Edited (TC-LasVegas) : 5/5/2010 5:56:59 PM (GMT-6)


Purgatory
Elite Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 23878
   Posted 5/5/2010 3:19 PM (GMT -6)   
Tony, I am both proud and pleased with your effort for the screening grant in your area, I think its great in every way. I still agree 100% the way you do about screening and the most recent ACS remarks, I feel strongly that they are sending all the wrong messages. With a lot of men, its hard enough for them to take anything pro-active about their own personal health care, so any unclear message about PSA screening is a major step in the wrong direction in my opinion. I think you are doing exactly the right thing.

David in SC
Age: 57, 56 dx, PSA: 7/07 5.8, 7/08 12.3, 9/08 14.5, 10/08 16.3
3rd Biopsy: 9/08 - 7/7 Positive, 40-90% Cancer, Gleason 4+3
Open RP: 11/08, Rht nerves saved, 4 days in hospt, on catheters for 63 days, 5th one out 1/09
Path Rpt: Gleason 3+4, pT2c, 42g, 20% cancer, 1 pos margin
Incontinence:  1 Month     ED:  Non issue at any point post surgery, no problem post SRT
Post Surgery  PSA: 2/09 .05,5/09 .1, 6/09 .11. 8/09 .16
Post SRT PSA: 1/10 .12, 4/8 .04, next one:  July
Latest: 7/9 met 2 rad. oncl, 7/9 cath #6 - blockage, 8/9 2nd corr surgery, 8/9 cath #7 out 38 days, 9/9 - met 3rd rad. oncl., mapped  9/9, 10/1 - 3rd corr. surgery - SP cath/hard dialation, 10/5 - 11/27 IMRT SRT 39 sess/72 gys ,cath #8 33 days, Cath #9 35 days, 12/7 - Cath #10 43 days, 1/19 - Corr Surgery #4,  Caths #11 and #12  same time, 2/8-Cath #11 out - 21 days, 3/2- Cath #12 out - 41 days, 3/2- Corr Surgery #5, 3/6 Cath #13 out - 4 days, Cath #14- 27 days, Cath #15 - 26 days, Cath #16 - 4/23 put in


142
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 5816
   Posted 5/5/2010 3:37 PM (GMT -6)   
Tony,
I am now a poster child for testing. As I've said many times, I always presumed that with all the bills I got each year for tests I did not understand, nor know how to ask for or refuse, everything was there. I never argued about the bills.
It was only when a nurse was leafing though a file looking for the last tetanus shot last July that she noticed there had not been a PSA for years. She asked, I did it, and the firestorm of exams, DRE, tests, and more tests started on the road to DaVinci and now IGRT.
You'll remember I came out of oblivious happiness into 9 of 12 cores positive with mostly 4+4. Post-op was 4+5.
The docs (multiple) figured I would have made perhaps another year before systemic mets set in if I had just ignored it.

So I owe a lot, perhaps more than I realize, to an attentive nurse and a PSA test.

Go out there and keep doing what you are doing. If I had walked past a screening session, I probably would have stopped just out of principle. Just wish there had been one in my path earlier.

zufus
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 3129
   Posted 5/5/2010 6:44 PM (GMT -6)   
A righteous local Hospital in Rochester Hills, Michigan called Crittenton Hospital, has walkin psa tests, for anybody, from anywhere, for cheap  $15 and send you the results and to your doc by mail within days.  I have been using this as my backup and confirmation psa tests for years and years. Great gig. cool
Youth is wasted on the Young-(W.C. Fields)


Casey59
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 3172
   Posted 5/5/2010 7:10 PM (GMT -6)   
TC-LasVegas said...
When we greet the men before they go in, they will receive information about testing, about UsTOO, how to receive local support and information, and a way to speak to informed survivors and the professionals at the Comprehensive Cancer Centers of Nevada.
 
 
Tony,
 
Thanks for your reply.  Sounds like your program recognizes, and will be in-step with, the recent changes made to the ACS guidelines which are focused on "community screening" programs.
 
Your Father's Day program sounds like a great idea.  Best wishes for a successful day...I believe it has the potential to make a difference!
 
best regards
 
 
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