A prostatectomy is a form of surgery during which a operated doctor will remove the prostate gland, often due to cancer. Complying with the operation, medical professionals use prostate-specific antigen trial and error to examine for indicators of cancer recurrence.

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The prostate gland produces short levels of a protein dubbed prostate-specific antigen (PSA). Cancer prostate cells likewise produce PSA.

Doctors use PSA test to inspect levels of PSA in a person’s blood. Greater levels that this protein have the right to indicate a difficulty with prostate health, including prostate cancer.

One treatment option for prostate cancer is a prostatectomy. Throughout a radical prostatectomy, a operated doctor will eliminate the prostate as well as some the the tissue approximately the gland.

After a prostatectomy, that is regular for a human to continue having continuous PSA tests. This help doctors inspect that the operation team gotten rid of the cancer successfully, and also that it has actually not returned.

In this article, we discuss why PSA experimentation is crucial after a prostatectomy and also what the results have the right to mean. We also cover treatment and prevention of climbing PSA levels.


Why is PSA testing essential after prostatectomy?

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Share ~ above PinterestA doctor might recommend PSA experimentation to identify if the prostate cancer has returned after ~ surgery.
It is possible for prostate cancer to return ~ a prostatectomy. One examine from 2013 argues that prostate cancer recurs in approximately 20–40 percent of men within 10 years of having a radical prostatectomy.

Although surgeons eliminate the prostate gland during a prostatectomy, part cancer cells can travel into the bordering tissue. If these cancer cell multiply, lock can reason prostate cancer come return.

PSA experimentation can assist doctors find and also treat prostate cancer early. This is why they market PSA testing, in addition to other tests, to world after they have actually treatment because that prostate cancer.


What do the results mean?

Doctors measure up PSA level in nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL) of blood. PSA levels adjust over time and also tend to climb with age. They also vary slightly in between individuals.

However, follow to the Prostate Cancer Foundation, common levels are within the complying with ranges:

AgeNormal PSA range
40–49 years0–2.5 ng/mL
50–59 years0–4 ng/mL
60–69 years0–4.5 ng/mL
70–79 years0–6.5 ng/mL

The American Cancer society (ACS) suggest that doctors regularly recommend the a person waits until 6–8 weeks ~ surgery before having a PSA test. This is because tests can still finding PSA in the blood after a prostatectomy during this period.

After treatment, world expect their PSA level to be really low. In plenty of cases, level of PSA in the blood will certainly be undetectable.

However, if trial and error does finding PSA after ~ a prostatectomy, this does not typical that cancer has returned. Noncancerous cell can also make PSA. A doctor have the right to advise on even if it is a person needs further testing or treatment.

Doctors can likewise advise ~ above what PSA level a person have the right to expect to have actually after treatment.


Seeing a rise in PSA level walk not always mean the prostate cancer is return or spreading. The check is very sensitive and also can pick up little changes in PSA levels.

Doctors will generally want to know how easily levels that PSA in the blood space rising. To discover this out, a human being will should have continual PSA tests. If level of PSA stay stable or rise very slowly, treatment might not be necessary.

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In some cases, high PSA levels in the blood are not because of cancer cells. Some components that can influence PSA level include:

older ageethnicitymedication

A physician will take these factors and also the who medical background into account when looking at check results. This can assist them decide if PSA levels room high sufficient to reason concern.