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ad hoc psa test ad hoc result

Posted 30 Jan 2020 at 20:54

At a recent blood test for a GP health screening I asked if a psa test could be added.   It's yes if you're being treated by urology.

The GP uses a different hospital to my normal psa test and the result came back 0.08.  Detectable and up at least 0.03 from 4.5 months ago.   

The HCA doing the health screening knew nothing which is why you need to be under Urology.

That it had been <0.05 for 3 years made such a large percentage change in 4.5 months unlikely in my mind.   Perhaps an error or an aberration or maybe another laboratory using 0.08 as undetectable.  The GP doesn't use the < sign.

My usual Macmillan Nurse agreed to pull forward the next test.  Amazingly it was <0.05, phew.

Whether the first test was wrong, went to a different lab that used 0.08 I don't know.  The moral seems to be stick to the same hospital.  Although I have been undetectable there before.

It was a reminder of how it felt being diagnosed, worrying and looking for answers.  I still wonder how it happened and if  there is something else I should heed from it.

Edited by member 01 Feb 2020 at 09:47  | Reason: Not specified

Posted 30 Jan 2020 at 23:57

In the area where we live, urologists and GPs are all apparently aware that Harrogate Infirmary tests significantly higher than Leeds St James.

John had two PSA tests within an hour - one sample taken at the GP practice and the other at the hospital - led to two different results 0.068 and 0.10

Dad once had one blood sample tested twice by the same hospital lab on the same day and the results came back as 0.3 and 0.32

Machine noise, different calibration settings, small (normal) variations at different times of the day .... anyone with PSA anxiety should try to maintain a routine of some kind otherwise you my not be comparing like with like.

Edited by member 31 Jan 2020 at 00:01  | Reason: Not specified

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

Posted 31 Jan 2020 at 13:36
This is exactly why many places will simply say "<0.1". Variations in testing to two decimal places causes completely unnecessary stress.

Best wishes,


Posted 31 Jan 2020 at 14:25

Tell me about it 😱😱😂😂

Posted 01 Feb 2020 at 09:44

I know we've been over this a few times but although it was worrying to get a higher result, I'd rather know as soon as possible if it's increasing.

If undetectable had been <0.1 I'd have waited another 6 months and at that rate it could have been 0.16 with no history.   

It's better to be ready and referred back to the doctor with 3 month appointments, rather than 6 monthly nurse telephone appointments.


Anyway my psa is still <0.05 and I can live with that threshold.

Edited by member 01 Feb 2020 at 21:14  | Reason: Not specified

Posted 01 Feb 2020 at 19:59


My PSA crept up from 0.03 post op to around 0.16 eighteen months post.  I was constantly told it might level out at 0.1, so when it broke the 0.1 threshold it was not a shock. At least  knew things were not great.

Thanks Chris

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