Q&A

Read common questions asked by patients with prostate problems, and responses from experts at Harvard.

Related Articles

Is PSA reliable?

That’s a good question, because having an elevated PSA doesn’t necessarily mean that a man has prostate cancer.

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What does a fluctuating PSA mean?

If your PSA has varied greatly and biopsies have been negative, you might want to try a different testing regimen.

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What is the difference between PSA and free PSA?

Kevin R. Loughlin, M.D., M.B.A., director of Urologic Research at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, explains how these tests differ.

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What is a “PSA bounce?”

I had brachytherapy to treat my prostate cancer and my PSA had dropped to 0.3 ng/ml. But six months ago, my PSA had gone up to 0.5, and now it’s up to 0.8 ng/ml. I’m worried that the cancer is back; my doctor said it could be a “PSA bounce.” What’s that?

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Does frequent ejaculation help ward off prostate cancer?

Studies show that ejaculating often may help protect against prostate cancer.

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Can a vasectomy increase prostate cancer risk?

Experts conclude that there is no association between vasectomy and prostate cancer risk.

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What’s the downside to a biopsy?

Even if my father takes antibiotics beforehand, could he develop a serious infection when he has a prostate biopsy later this year? Are there other possible complications we should be on the lookout for?

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How soon can I bike after a biopsy?

I am an avid bicyclist, and I am having a prostate biopsy in a few weeks. How long do I need to wait after the biopsy before I can start biking again?

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What if I have prostate cancer and lymphoma?

There’s no one correct course of action. In general, experts recommend first treating whichever condition is worse.

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Am I too old to have prostate surgery?

A radical prostatectomy is a major operation that can lead to serious complications. If a man is older than 75, his doctor may not want to operate on him.

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