Will my prostate cancer treatment cause incontinence?

Posted by David J. Cahn, MD on August 24, 2016 at 5:50 PM

Losing urinary control is a common fear when facing prostate cancer treatment. For some men, incontinence can seem worse than impotence (erectile dysfunction). And it’s no wonder. After all, it affects your life every day. If you’re worried about urinary incontinence or are dealing with it already, here’s what you need to know.

What: Urinary incontinence after a prostatectomy can present as anything from a dribble to loss of urine when you sneeze or cough (stress incontinence) to total leakage. After radiation therapy, men may have a combination of leakage and a need to urinate frequently. While incontinence is more of an annoyance than anything else, loss of control over the release of your urine can be stressful and embarrassing.

Read More

Tags: prostate cancer, prostatectomy, incontinence

Elevated PSA but negative prostate cancer biopsy

Posted by Foothills Urology on August 16, 2016 at 12:49 PM

Each year, about half of men over age 50 receive a PSA (prostate specific antigen) screening, according to the Centers for Disease Control. PSA is a protein produced in the prostate, and high levels of PSA may indicate cancer. About 10 percent of men tested receive results that indicate elevated levels of PSA. Often, when elevated PSA levels are detected, your physician will recommend a biopsy. The good news is, nearly three quarters of those biopsies will show no cancer.

Read More

Tags: prostate cancer, positive PSA test, elevated PSA, prostate cancer biopsy

Choosing the right treatment for your prostate cancer

Posted by Foothills Urology on July 27, 2016 at 9:57 AM

A high PSA level. A positive biopsy. A treatment recommendation that includes the word “radical.” Once a prostate cancer diagnosis sinks in, many men just want to remove it. Now. And that’s a completely valid response. But surgery may not be the only answer. It may not even be the best option for you.

Read More

Tags: prostate cancer, psa testing, prostate cancer surgery

New study endorses routine PSA screening

Posted by Foothills Urology on July 15, 2016 at 10:42 AM

Contradicting government recommendations four years ago that men should not get routine PSA testing, a new study says this simple blood test used to detect prostate cancer can reduce the number of deadly cases.

For Foothills Urology prostate surgeon Derek Zukosky, DO, the new findings reinforce his longtime position. “I strongly believe every man with a life expectancy greater than 10 years should be offered the option of prostate screening including a rectal exam and PSA test.  The issue isn’t the screening—it’s what’s we do with the information that it produces and the interventions we do or do not employ,” Zukosky says.

Prostate specific antigen, or PSA, testing measures antigens in the blood that are linked to the presence of prostate cancer. Since PSA testing was introduced in the early 1990s, the United States has seen about a 50 percent reduction in the death rate from prostate cancer, but questions remain about the role testing played. Prostate cancer remains the second leading cause of cancer death among American men and the second most common cancer in men after skin cancer.

In 2012, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommended against routine PSA testing, saying the benefit was offset by the risk of exposing men to potentially unnecessary treatment.  The 2012 recommendation cited the possibility that PSA screenings could identify cancers that would never spread and never pose a risk. Detecting such non-threatening cancers would, overall, provide little benefit, but could needlessly expose men to treatment that carries potential side effects, including erectile dysfunction, urinary incontinence, and bowel dysfunction, according to the recommendation.

Read More

Tags: prostate cancer, psa testing, advanced prostate cancer treatment

Seeing red in the bathroom? Time for a trip to the doctor.

Posted by Foothills Urology on June 16, 2016 at 2:58 PM

Seeing blood in your urine can mean many things, but it always means you should call your doctor right away.

Common causes of leakage of blood cells into urine — or hematuria — include:

  • Urinary tract infections - Bacteria have entered your body through the urethra and multiplied in your bladder. Symptoms include painful, burning, urgent, or frequent urination, and very strong-smelling urine.
  • Kidney infections - Bacteria can enter your kidneys from the bloodstream or from the ducts that pass urine from the kidneys to the bladder. Signs are similar to bladder infections, but more likely to cause fever, back pain, nausea and even confusion.
  • Bladder or kidney stone - Minerals in concentrated urine can leak out to form crystals on the walls of your kidney or bladder that can turn into small, hard stones over time. These stones can cause excruciating pain and bleeding. Urinary stones should be treated by a urologist to relieve immediate emergency pain and develop a treatment plan to prevent recurrence. (Foothills Urology treats all urinary stones within 24 hours, seven days a week.)
Read More

Tags: hematuria, bladder cancer, blood in urine, kidney cancer, prostate cancer

Understanding Your Prostate Cancer Gleason Score

Posted by Foothills Urology on June 6, 2016 at 12:27 PM

Gleason scores are the most common and useful measure of the severity of prostate cancer. But, to a patient, the score can - at first- seem as confusing as it is scary.

Gleason grades range from 1 (low) to 5 (high). When a pathologist looks at your prostate tissue biopsy, he will give a primary grade to the area where the cancer is most prominent, and a secondary grade to the next most prominent site. Those grades are added to come up with a Gleason score of 1 to 10.

Read More

Tags: minimally invasive robotic surgery, prostate cancer