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Cycling and post-RT PSA tests

User
Posted 27 Jun 2020 at 16:50

I've seen it said that when going for a PSA test, pre-treatment men should avoid cycling for 24h because the pressure on the prostate caused by cycling could artificially increase the PSA score.

I presume that this doesn't apply to PSA tests taken after RT, does it? The radiation's turned my prostate into porridge, so it shouldn't be affected in the same way, should it

I only ask because I've recently taken up cycling to improve my fitness and lose weigh.

Thanks,

Chris

 

User
Posted 27 Jun 2020 at 20:43
It is a misunderstanding Chris, which has become over-hyped by some.

For men with a prostate who are being closely monitored (for example, on AS trying to pinpoint when to move to radical treatment) it is worth noting that orgasm and rectal stimulation of the prostate can raise the PSA for up to 24 hours and cycling may raise the PSA for up to 4 hours. Even then, the estimate is that orgasm may raise the PSA by 10% and cycling by less than that. So it makes sense, if the trend is crucial, to try to behave in the same way before each test ... have sex or don't have sex, cycle or don't cycle but try to be consistent so that any small changes in PSA aren't misinterpreted.

The jury is out on whether cycling can raise the PSA in a man with a fried prostate but even if it could, would it really matter to you? If your current PSA is 1.0, you cycle this morning and have your PSA test this afternoon and the result is 1.05 could you be absolutely certain that you hadn't done anything before the previous test that could affect the reading?

John tries to be consistent about his behaviour at the time of each test; he cycles regularly, goes to the gym (well, he would do usually), has his blood test early in the morning, etc. If the next PSA is the same as last time, should we worry that it should have been lower because he hasn't been to the gym recently? Do the things that you enjoy and are good for your physical & mental health and at test time, remember that very small variations are not significant whereas a solid upward trend might be.

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

User
Posted 28 Jun 2020 at 00:02

Originally Posted by: Online Community Member
The radiation's turned my prostate into porridge, so it shouldn't be affected in the same way, should it

Radiation doesn't turn your prostate to porridge. The non-cancerous cells should mostly be living. Some people's prostates will even work after radiotherapy. The main damage done which prevents the prostate working is fibrosis of the muscle during the repeated healing process, which prevents the prostate being able to contract and expel prostatic fluid. I'm told by a consultant that on average, a prostate is around 5% effective after radiotherapy, but that means 50% or more for a few people, and too low to generate any semen for many others.

It's an organ in your body, which your body needs to be able to maintain. So it needs to have a working blood supply to keep it and the urethra alive and well, able to fight infections, etc. Radiotherapy is not seeking to kill it - that size and placement of a necrotic organ inside your body would be fatal.

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User
Posted 27 Jun 2020 at 20:22

I think it would apply even for us men with porridge prostates. There are still active prostate cells there, which could get irritated, activated, stimulated, whatever by pressure on the prostate.

For people who have had surgery they should have no cells where the prostate was so no amount of pressure will stimulate them, so no cycling induced increase in psa, if surgery was successful.

Keep up the cycling though exercise is good for you, but leave it a couple of days before your next psa test. 

Dave

User
Posted 27 Jun 2020 at 20:43
It is a misunderstanding Chris, which has become over-hyped by some.

For men with a prostate who are being closely monitored (for example, on AS trying to pinpoint when to move to radical treatment) it is worth noting that orgasm and rectal stimulation of the prostate can raise the PSA for up to 24 hours and cycling may raise the PSA for up to 4 hours. Even then, the estimate is that orgasm may raise the PSA by 10% and cycling by less than that. So it makes sense, if the trend is crucial, to try to behave in the same way before each test ... have sex or don't have sex, cycle or don't cycle but try to be consistent so that any small changes in PSA aren't misinterpreted.

The jury is out on whether cycling can raise the PSA in a man with a fried prostate but even if it could, would it really matter to you? If your current PSA is 1.0, you cycle this morning and have your PSA test this afternoon and the result is 1.05 could you be absolutely certain that you hadn't done anything before the previous test that could affect the reading?

John tries to be consistent about his behaviour at the time of each test; he cycles regularly, goes to the gym (well, he would do usually), has his blood test early in the morning, etc. If the next PSA is the same as last time, should we worry that it should have been lower because he hasn't been to the gym recently? Do the things that you enjoy and are good for your physical & mental health and at test time, remember that very small variations are not significant whereas a solid upward trend might be.

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

User
Posted 28 Jun 2020 at 00:02

Originally Posted by: Online Community Member
The radiation's turned my prostate into porridge, so it shouldn't be affected in the same way, should it

Radiation doesn't turn your prostate to porridge. The non-cancerous cells should mostly be living. Some people's prostates will even work after radiotherapy. The main damage done which prevents the prostate working is fibrosis of the muscle during the repeated healing process, which prevents the prostate being able to contract and expel prostatic fluid. I'm told by a consultant that on average, a prostate is around 5% effective after radiotherapy, but that means 50% or more for a few people, and too low to generate any semen for many others.

It's an organ in your body, which your body needs to be able to maintain. So it needs to have a working blood supply to keep it and the urethra alive and well, able to fight infections, etc. Radiotherapy is not seeking to kill it - that size and placement of a necrotic organ inside your body would be fatal.

User
Posted 28 Jun 2020 at 15:48
Thanks, all. Very helpful advice as always!

Chris

User
Posted 28 Jun 2020 at 16:22
When ever you decide to get back in the saddle I suggest you get a good prostate/,perenium friendly saddle.

Good luck with ongoing recovery

Cheers

Bill

User
Posted 28 Jun 2020 at 19:05

Originally Posted by: Online Community Member
When ever you decide to get back in the saddle I suggest you get a good prostate/,perenium friendly saddle.

Good luck with ongoing recovery

Cheers
Bill

I have one, Bill. Nice SMP Gel saddle with a cutout in the middle! Trying to go for a ride every day, although today's been a complete washout.

Best wishes,

Chris

 

 
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