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A New Chapter

Posted 10 Feb 2020 at 01:37


I have my PSA checked every two months and my oncologist told me that she expected my results to continue to rise as long as I was on my present treatment (Zoladex).  

When I was tested in November I was pleasantly surprised that my figure had fallen to 2.50 from 3.20 in the previous test (in September).

My latest PSA results, two weeks ago showed a rise to 4.10, quite a jump from 2.50, two months before. 

I been trying to figure out why the November result would have been so much lower than expected and what may have caused it. The rate of rise has been fairly consistent in the two years since restarting treatment. 

I think I may have discovered why. 

A week before I took the November test I'd spent the night in hospital because my blood oxygen level had fallen to 84% causing me to be very breathless.  After 6 hours on oxygen I was sent home with a 5 day supply of steroid tables to take.

It was only the other day when I was reading possible treatments for advanced prostate cancer that it mentioned that steroids are sometimes given to slow down the progression of cancer. 

Could this be why the lower result occurred?  If so, should I be on steroids now rather than having than treatment at a later stage as it seems to have worked better than Zoladex alone?

In reality, I would be very reluctant to take steroids on a regular basis because of the side effects that I know can occur. My wife has been prescribed them for another condition and she is now diabetic as a result. 

I'd be interested to hear if anyone has any thoughts on my idea that it may have been the steroids that caused the unexpected fall in PSA.



Posted 10 Feb 2020 at 08:46


I don't know if the steroids have anything to do with your psa score. What I will say though is even after my recent change in treatment due to the PC spreading. I am still on steroids, even though I have stopped Abiraterone and gone onto chemo. I must ask my onco why he has continued even though the abi has failed.  The benefits in the past have outwayed the side effects for me anyway so maybe they would in your case ?


Posted 10 Feb 2020 at 09:55


Steroids do seem to have a positive effect in keeping PCa at bay...........

Steroids can be used to try to shrink the tumour and stop it growing. The most effective steroid treatment is dexamethasone (https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/prostate-cancer/treatment/)

So certainly worth raising it with your consultant.



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