Put a Speedometer on Your Prostate

Health Alert 128

How do you know if your prostate is getting healthier or getting worse? How do you know if the supplements you are taking are working? Of course you can use your symptoms – such as how often you wake up at night to urinate. But lab tests can also be helpful. The most sensitive test for tracking your progress is a PSA velocity.

In this series on benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH, you’ve learned some natural and safe methods for preventing and reversing prostate enlargement. Now, you can put them to the test and find out how well they are working for you. Today, you’ll learn about an important way you can monitor your prostate health.

* The New “Gold Standard” for Your Prostate *

You have very probably heard about a prostate test called a PSA. PSA or prostate-specific antigen is a protein produced by the prostate gland. In times of harm, the prostate releases more PSA. We can measure this released PSA in your blood.

Your PSA will rise if you have trauma to your prostate. An infection, prostate cancer or BPH will also raise your PSA. If you have BPH, the little known PSA velocity may be the best way to track it.

PSA velocity is the measurement of how your PSA levels rise or fall over time. The more rapid the rise in PSA, the worse your BPH has become. If your PSA velocity falls over time, it’s an indication your BPH treatment is working.

We need at least 3 PSA measurements to get an accurate PSA Velocity. Your PSA measurements should each be between 6 months and 2 years apart.

* Measuring Your Diligence*

Even though BPH is not life threatening, it can seriously deteriorate your quality of life. It is an

irritating and relentless disease that will follow you to your grave … if you don’t do anything about it.

• Begin testing your PSA at the age of 50.

• Test your PSA at least once a year. (Make it a part of your yearly physical.)

• Calculate your PSA velocity after your first 3 PSA tests. Then, every year after that.

• If your PSA velocity is rising, aggressively take measures to inhibit BPH.

A “normal” PSA level is under 4ng/mL. If it is higher than 4, you have an increased risk of both BPH and cancer.

A normal PSA velocity is less than 0.75 ng/mL/yr. Any higher is an indication of worsening BPH and increased risk of prostatic cancer.

“Normal” PSA Results
Under 4
Under 0.75

Your doctor will help you to interpret and track your unique PSA levels. But if you are curious in the interim, check out this online PSA velocity calculator. http://www.urologychannel.com/HealthProfiler/healthpro_psaVel.shtml.

This is not an alternative to a doctor’s interpretation of your results, but you can use it to monitor your prostate supplements effectiveness.

Al Sears MD