So many times you would leave the urologist’s office, after having the results of a PSA test explained, filled with much uncertainty as to whether the indicators could be incorrect. Knowing that PSA screening is not a precise diagnostic instrument for determining cancer of the prostate, can lead to anxiety and depression. But those days are almost over. New research study found PSA screening is more reliable in men taking the PSA level reduction drug dutasteride.
Dutasteride is a dual 5-alpha-reductase inhibitor, approved by the FDA for the treatment of symptomatic benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), better known as enlarged prostate.
A hormone, dihydrotestosterone (DHT), causes the prostate to slowly grow over time. Dutasteride slows down the production of DHT over time, leading to shrinkage of the enlarged prostate, and reducing the symptoms of BPH.
Dutasteride reduces the risk of prostate cancers by keeping the turmors small enough to avoid detection by a biopsy. Thus, men taking Dutasteride who still show a subsequent rise in PSA levels should be associated with having aggressive high-grade cancer.
This new study reveals how Dutasteride enhances the ability of rising PSA levels to detect high-grade cancers that require early diagnosis and treatment, while decreasing the detection of tumors that are harmless. However, it doesn’t mean men should take dutasteride to better PSA scores.