At-home PSA testing

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New Member

Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 10/19/2010 1:06 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi all
I had DaVinci prostatectomy on 9/20/07 at the age of 47. I believe I recall the pathology report as Gleason 3+3 (6), margins free, no sv involvemnet, no tumor involvement outside the prostate.
PSA tests at the urologist every 6 months have all indicated no trace of PSA.
In an effort to save money I decided (in September) to try an at-home PSA test I saw on the web. Prick your finger, put a few drops of blood on a swab and drop it in the US mail. According to the lab report I received 10 days elapsed from when I pricked my finger and when the lab performed the test. The report indicated: <0.60<
What does that mean? The lab doesn't answer the phone or respond to email and needless to say I am quite worried. Does that math notation mean it was the low limit of their testing???
Thanks in advance for your replies.
Nervous in Florida

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 363
   Posted 10/19/2010 1:37 PM (GMT -6)   
First off welcome!!! Looks like you're on a good path.

I ordered a genetic breed test from an online ad on a known lab/terrier mix dog, it came back as a poodle, got a good laugh out of that and the "lab" got $45 of my money.

For something this important stay with a legitimate lab and don't worry about a result from something "off the web".
Diagnosed 12-09 age 55
07-06 PSA 2.5
01-08 PSA 5.5 (PCP did not tell me of increase or schedule follow-up!!!!)
09-09 PSA 6.5 Sent for consult with Urologist
11-09 Consult, scheduled for biopsy, found out about PSA from '08 (yes I was pissed)
12-09 Biopsy, initial Gleason 9 (4+5) later reduced to 8 with tertiary 5, ain't much but I'll take it.
01-10 Bone Scan, "appears negative"
03-01-10 RRP in Durango CO by Dr Sejal Quale and Dr Shandra Wilson, no naked eye evidence of spread, Vesicles and lymph nodes taken for microscopic exam.

03-16-10 Removal of cath' and pathology results of samples.
Multifocal carcinoma with areas of Gleason pattern 3, 4 and 5, Overall Gleason grade 4+4 with tertiary 5, Bilateral involving 21% of left lobe, 3% of right lobe, Invasion of left Seminal vesicle, Tumor focally present at left resection margin, 9 lymph nodes removed all negative, Tumor staging pT3b NO MX

04-23-10 PSA <0.04....... 06-07-10 PSA <0.04..... 08-03-10 <0.04
05-03-10 1 week without pads
06-28-10 ;-)

Steve n Dallas
Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 4849
   Posted 10/19/2010 1:41 PM (GMT -6)   
What were your last few PSA scores before this mail in thingie?
Was the blood sample you sent in the mail refrigerated?
Can't say that I would trust a mail in site unless the members here recommended one.
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
05/18/10 - 24 Month PSA -> less then .01
Surgeon - Keith A. Waguespack, M.D.
Growing old is mandatory; growing up is optional..

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 2680
   Posted 10/19/2010 1:42 PM (GMT -6)   
You may have saved some money, but you've certainly caused yourself a lot of worry that will hopefully turn out to be for no cause. If it were me, I would call my uro, tell him what I did, and see if he would please set me up with a PSA test at a local, reputable lab.  I don't think I would ever trust a mail order lab with something so important.  Nor would I trust the result of such a test to be accurate.  Maybe someone else has actual experience and can speak with more authority.

New Member

Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 10/19/2010 4:40 PM (GMT -6)   
Many thanks to those who have already responded to my inquiry.
I hope this follow-up helps other readers in turn.
I made my original posting today as I was waiting on THE call from the Urologist with my latest PSA test results. I am happy to report that the PSA level was undetectable at less than 0.04!!!!!!!!!!!
I made the mistake of ordering an "at-home/mail-in" PSA test in September and the report indicated PSA: <0.60<
I have been worried sick for almost a month as I scheduled a "real" PSA test with the Urologist and waited for the results.
I don't know if anyone else has had similar issues but I will NEVER do a mail-in PSA test again. Not worth the $20 I thought I would save.
Thank God for the continued chance to live and learn.
DaVinci 9.20.07 (age 47)
T2b Gleason 3+3
Margins free, no SV involvement
All post-op PSA tests undetectable
No incontinece after 2 weeks
No ED issues after 6 months

Worried Guy
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 3742
   Posted 10/19/2010 6:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Is there any chance you can post the name of the place where you sent your money? This looks like something we all should avoid.
You can help more guys than you can imagine.

Any reputable report should include: the lab name and location , the name or initials of the tech performing the test, the equipment used, the test protocol and protocol date. Was any of that information supplied? Additionally, when you call the lab you should never have to wait more than 3 rings before someone knowledgeable answers.

You asked "What does that mean? The lab doesn't answer the phone or respond to email and needless to say I am quite worried. Does that math notation mean it was the low limit of their testing???"

I hope I am wrong but since you asked "What does it mean?" I think, it means you were scammed. Plain and simple.

Please help the next guys by telling your story with details. That way if someone else googles the company name and address or "home PSA test" they will find your post and save themselves money and heartache.

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