What to expect-1st PSA after Radiation/Hormone

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2010
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 11/8/2010 1:33 PM (GMT -6)   
Wondering what to expect on first PSA after radiation. Only 2 weeks post-treatment and I know it will take time for radiation to be effective, but shouldn't the Lupron reduce the PSA to undetectable? Woody has been on it 4 months. Worried out my mind.

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 1010
   Posted 11/8/2010 2:47 PM (GMT -6)   
Lupron does not always reduce the PSA to a non detect level. See signature for details.
Diagnosed 04/10/08 Age 58
Gleason 4 + 3
DRE palpable tumor on left side
100% of 12 cores positive for PCa range 35% to 85%
Bone scan and chest x ray clear
CT scan shows potential lymph node involvement in pelvic region
IGRT/IMRT with adjuvant HT (lupron) 2yrs
02/08 21.5
07/08 0.82
10/08 .642
09/09 0.32
03/10 0.32
06/10 0.32
07/10 0.10

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 3172
   Posted 11/8/2010 2:50 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Woodysgirl,

The short answer is "it depends." Its going to depend on a lot of things, like how high his PSA was before treatment started. It's relatively common to not reach the PSA low-point (nadir, which may or may not be detectable) until around 9-months of Lupron treatment. Concurrent radiation has a delayed affect on PSA, as you suspected. Unfortunately, it will be impossible to separate the impact of Lupron from the impact of radiation.

I would encourage you to not worry excessively about the things you can't control; rather, focus on the things within your control. Lifestyle tactics appear to be very important to success for advanced PC patients; things like diet, nutrition, exercise and stress reduction.

mr bill
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Date Joined Sep 2010
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   Posted 11/9/2010 5:48 PM (GMT -6)   
Do you know where one might find a good diet for PC?  I am looking for something in black and white. I certainly have read about things to avoid, such as dairy, red meat, etc. But I am one of those people that need something to read.
Mr Bill

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Date Joined Jul 2010
Total Posts : 3892
   Posted 11/9/2010 6:21 PM (GMT -6)   
While combining HT and RT does seem to make the RT more effective, it also muddies the water..HT usually results in a dramatic reduction in PSA and any symptoms directly related to PC...So it's impossible to tell if the RT had any effect on the cancer until the HT is suspended or discontinued..This makes evaluating how effective RT is very difficult when its combined with HT...

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Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 1382
   Posted 11/9/2010 9:57 PM (GMT -6)   
From my experience it takes about six months for everything to kick in. My first PSA which was about three months after my first lupron shot and completion of radiation my PSA was down to 1 a few months later it went to zero.

peace to you
My PSA at diagnosis was 16.3
age 47 (current)


My gleason score from prostate was 4+5=9 and from the lymph nodes (3 positive) was 4+4=8
I had 44 IMRT's
I was on Lupron, Casodex, and Avodart for two years with my last shot March 2009. I am currently (7-22-2010) not on any medication.
My Oncology hospital is The Cancer Treatment Center of America in Zion IL
PSA July of 2007 was 16.4
PSA May of 2008 was.11
PSA July 24th, 2008 is 0.04
PSA Dec 16th, 2008 is .016
PSA Mar 30th, 2009 is .02
PSA July 28th 2009 is .01
PSA OCt 15th 2009 is .11
PSA Jan 15th 2010 is .13
PSA April 16th of 2010 is .16
PSA July 22nd of 2010 is .71
Testosterone keeps rising, the current number is 156, up from 57 in May

T level dropped to 37 Mar 30th, 2009
cancer in 4 of 6 cores

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 3172
   Posted 11/10/2010 9:54 AM (GMT -6)   
mr bill said...
Do you know where one might find a good diet for PC?  I am looking for something in black and white. I certainly have read about things to avoid, such as dairy, red meat, etc. But I am one of those people that need something to read.
Mr Bill
Yes, Mr Bill, I do.

First of all, I'm glad to see your interest in taking the upper hand in the things associated with this disease that are within your control.  I’ve commented many times that it is hard to imagine anyone in the world more motivated to seek out an anti-cancer regimen than a cancer survivor who wants to be sure he remains a survivor.  Diet, exercise and lifestyle management are the levers of change that are within our control…but that being said, I know that change is difficult for many people


Anyhow, I have a good starting point of reading material to point you to…a thread here at HW from September.  We have had other posters here who have posted some results that should be downright motivational.  In the thread I am sending here, I provided a bullet list of links to some sites I had accumulated in my “Favorites” list.  Read my comments throughout the thread, but also absorb all of the comments (unfortunately, the thread is also peppered with the type of obnoxiousness which sometimes appears in online forums; I suggest doing what I do and simply ignore those).  Somewhere around the middle of the thread you will find my list of links.


Before you go to that September HW link, read this short article at WebMD (click here; let me know if that link doesn't work for you).  These relevant points in layman’s terms were drawn in this article from a study at UCSF (Univ of Calif at San Fran), a leading institution in prostate cancer research:


·         diet & lifestyle changes can have a profound affect on prostate cancer progression

·         the notion of “I can’t change my genes” (with regard to how heredity affects one’s PC) is revisited

·         “a little bit is better than nada”, which are my words ‘borrowed’ from a song in the movie “Tin Cup”, but means that diet & lifestyle changes do not require an all-or-nothing approach to realize benefit; but, the more change, the better the outcome


Here's the link to the September HW thread:  http://www.healingwell.com/community/default.aspx?f=35&m=1894904


Please do come back and let me know if this link provides you with the type of reading material you were looking for…  


edit:  fixed link

Post Edited (Casey59) : 11/10/2010 1:23:26 PM (GMT-7)

Elite Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 25393
   Posted 11/10/2010 10:08 AM (GMT -6)   
mr. bill,

there's a whole flip side to your question about diet. I have had 2 meetings, just in the past 3 weeks with the Oncology Dietician with my hospital, and its a large system. she strongly feels that it is wrong and serves no purpose to avoid entire foods and food groups in dealing with cancer. this is what she does for a living, for the cancer community. she pushes the "heart healthy" diets, including the mederteranian type diets for all her patients

she said, cancer or no cancer, you need limited amounts of red meats, dairy, etc, all the things some are advocating people to avoid. it still comes back to having a balanced diet, and eating things in moderation.

just because a handful of doctors have written books pushing extreme dietary measures, doesn't make it a fact, and certainly doesn't make it wise to follow blindly and for all the "studies" that have been shown in one direction, there's an equal number of studies that would refute the others.

there is no hard, undisutable proof, that shows that dietary changes are either going to slow down or eliminate cancer cells. no matter how bad people want to beleive that, the hard proof isnt there.

a person can google or wika for hours, then cut and paste any point they want to prove, still doesnt make it a fact.

we should all be on a heart healthy diet, we should eat in moderation, we should lose weight if needed, and if you drink - that should be in moderation, and if you smoke - then quit smoking, that's still the single best thing you can do for your overall health.

i am only advising not to get drawn into one of these deals where you are being convinced to give up major food groups and choices.
if you like green tea, drink it, not going to hurt you. if you like the taste of pomegrante juice, then drink it. if you think they are some kind of mystical or magical cure for cancer, you are being fooled.

just eat healthy and balanced.

david in sc
Age: 58, 56 dx, PSA: 7/07 5.8, 10/08 16.3
3rd Biopsy: 9/08 7 of 7 Positive, 40-90%, Gleason 4+3
open RP: 11/08, on catheters for 101 days
Path Rpt: Gleason 3+4, pT2c, 42g, 20% cancer, 1 pos marg
Incont & ED: None
Post Surgery PSA: 2/09 .05,5/09 .1, 6/09 .11. 8/09 .16
Post SRT PSA: 1/10 .12, 4/8 .04, 8/6 .06 11/10 Not taking it
Latest: 6 Corr Surgeries to Bladder Neck, SP Catheter since 10/1/9, SRT 39 Sess/72 gy ended 11/09, 21 Catheters, Ileal Conduit Surgery 9/23/10

mr bill
Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 709
   Posted 11/10/2010 8:21 PM (GMT -6)   
Casey and David,  Thank you both for the input. It is healthy to opposing views, it puts things in perspective.  The HW thread was very informative.
My wife and I have always tried to eat healthy. She suffers from Migraines that can be brought on by foods, among other things. She has suffered them since 8th grade.  Obviously, when we are off on one of our "adventures" our good diet sometimes, well most always, falls by the roadside. However, that was before PC.  Based on what I have learned from several sources I have really began to watch my diet.  I have to give it the best I can. Does a "PC diet" work? I haven't the foggiest idea, but I will give it a try.  
I think Ornish may be on to something, just not sure if it will work for me. However, for the 'chilun's and grandchilun's I gotta have a go at it.
Again, thank you,
Mr. Bill

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 7270
   Posted 11/10/2010 11:21 PM (GMT -6)   
David's advice is right on. At least it reflects exactly what I was told at Umich.

mr bill
Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 709
   Posted 11/11/2010 7:42 AM (GMT -6)   
It is hard to know with so many conflicting issues. For instance, last night we had farm raised Atlantic Salmon for dinner. We have always know farm raised Salmon should be eaten in moderation since it was found to contain PCB's. Then I sat down and picked up recent issue of Reader's Digest and lo and behold, the Salmon contains as much as sixteen times the PCB's as other seafood. They did go on to say it was in the range recognized by the EPA as potentially harmful, and we should not consume more than 8 oz. a month. I know that just because it was in Reader's Digest does not make it gospel. Next week it may all be different. So I just shrugged it off, and went to the fridge and, in a fit of confusion, grabbed a large chunk of blueberry pie with all kinds of preservatives, aspertain, fat, etc., and ate it. We normally do not even have store bought pastry in the house, but, as I once said, my old theory, before PC, If it doesn't move for five minutes, or is not nailed down it is edible.

I use the above example to show how confusing this all is. That is why it is important to call on the vast experience at this web site. Thank you all for the input it will help in my effort to heal.

Mr. Bill
Age 66
BPH since 1996. at least three negative biopsies Erie. Uro did not prescribe finasteride
2007 acute urine retention photoselective vaporize Clev. Clinic
8-9-10 PSA rose to 10.14 with finasteride positive biopsy Cleveland gleason 9, cat & bone scan negative
9-8-10 Robotic prostatectomy at Cleveland. Biopsy 9 nodes, 2 positive,seminal & vas deferens
PSA 3 wk .06, 6 wk <.03

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 3172
   Posted 11/11/2010 2:15 PM (GMT -6)   
mr bill said...

I use the above example to show how confusing this all is.

Mr Bill, yeah, it can be confusing.  I think your key point is that it takes an attentive person to make informed, educated choices about one’s diet selections in order to reap maximum benefit.  Glad that you found those links I provided to be helpful in that regard.


High volumes of PCBs can be harmful (although a JAMA report by Harvard School of Public Health acknowledges this fact, but says that the benefits of eating even farmed salmon outweighs the risks imposed by contaminants)…but you are right, by the way, that by the time the news shows up in Reader’s Digest, it’s old news.   I buy the wild salmon (buy Pacific versus Atlantic salmon) to simply avoid this issue altogether.  Of course, as you saw in the links I provided, the beneficial Omega-3 is available through a wide variety of fatty, cold water fishes…variety is the spice of life!


One of the most striking facts to me is the retrospective studies which have shown that men who eat red meat five times a week are more than twice as likely to develop PC as men who eat red meat less than once a week (this was in one of my links)…so the song I quoted last time is correct:  “a little bit is better than nada”; well actually in this case a little bit is better than a lot, not nada, but you got the idea.  So, cut way down on red meat, and add fish and plant-based foods to your diet (add sautéed veggies or tomato sauce made with healthy olive oil to pasta or rice for dinner).  These types of choices are all within our personal control to change…but it sounds like (from the efforts you described in your response) you already “get it” about this type of change. 




Mel, I can’t exactly comment on your posting.  I made a decision to use the “Ignore” button (“thumbs down” icon in upper right hand corner of each post) back around September because of the obnoxious and aggressive behavior going on [the linked thread above is a good (bad) example], so your reference to “David’s advice” is invisible to me.  Nonetheless, I’d be really curious, and concerned, if any UMich advice you received said anything contrary to what I posted above.  Please advise on specifics.



take care...

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