Just in case anyone else ends up on my roller coaster, here's at least one example of a good outcome...
In December I had my one year visit following RRP and it's associated PSA draw. Much to my chagrin after three < (less than) 0.01 results using the Beckman Coulter assay, it came back AT 0.01. Now I know...several would kill for that level, but to me it seemed like I was heading for chemical failure, and you'll have to pardon me for not being too excited about
the trend. My doctor said that it was well within the "margin of error" and that in his experience lab techs even leave off the < symbol either out of complacency or even that they somehow think they may have screwed up, or that the machine in use needed re-calibration. He said "not to worry" and that he'd re-test in six months. My other two uros I consult with said not to worry as well. My doc compromised and told me to re-test in three months instead of six. Beyond the fact that I seriously doubt ANY of them wouldn't have been in the lab for another draw yelling "STAT!!!" at the top of their lungs if it were them, my personality was tearing my mind a new one over the number so much that I went to my GP and had another draw done on my own nickle, and it came back AT 0.01 as well. Needless to say I was bummed out, although happy that it hadn't gone up. I just had my three month follow-up and this one (from the same lab using the same assay) come back < (less than) 0.01. Needless to say I am overjoyed, but I felt the need to post the result as living proof that there is "slop" in the tests in case someone else is in the same boat.
A good day for me indeed.
Robotic RP 12/07
Pre-surgical PSA 5.02
Bone scan/Chest X-ray clear
All margins, seminal vesicles, bladder resection margin, 17 lymphs clear
Three Post-surgical PSA's <0.01
Forth (one year 12/08) PSA 0.01 (not less than)
Fifth (on my own initiative 2/09) PSA 0.01