Your PSA Numbers and Testosterone Replacement Therapy — Will TRT Increase Your PSA Numbers or Cause Prostate Cancer?
How do PSA numbers and testosterone replacement therapy go hand in hand? Can it increase your risk of prostate cancer? Find out here.
Here are two frightening statistics for you: First, recent studies have shown that 1 in 4 men above the age of 30, suffers from low testosterone levels. That is a problem. Second, 1 in 6 men will get prostate cancer in their lifetime. That is a more significant problem.
What is the significance of these two statistics? I’ll tell you.
The most commonly prescribed treatment for low testosterone levels is testosterone replacement therapy. However, even though testosterone has never been proven to cause prostate cancer, it does cause cancer to grow if it already exists.
And thus you have a paradoxical situation.
What can you do if your testosterone levels are considered low? Do you begin TRT? But if you do start therapy and add testosterone, won’t that increase the risk of prostate cancer?
Read on if you need to undergo TRT and are concerned about the cancer risk. Learn how you can use a standard blood test to measure your PSA numbers and avoid any surprises.
What Is Testosterone?
Testosterone is a naturally occurring hormone in both men and women, although at much higher levels in males. T-levels are at their highest during adolescence and early adulthood, and then start to decline as men age.
Once a man crosses the age of 30, the typical range of testosterone levels is between 300ng/DL and 1200ng/DL, with the average at about 600ng/DL. A level of 500ng/DL or less is considered low.
Why Are Low Testosterone Levels a Problem?
Most people associate testosterone with sex drive, sperm production, and general manliness. Indeed, testosterone does regulate all of the above.
But testosterone isn’t only about being competent in the sack. Low levels of testosterone can affect bone density, muscle mass, sleep quality and athletic performance. It can lead to hypertension, lethargy, depression, obesity, and decreased cognitive function.
Testosterone replacement therapy provides the means to combat all these problems, and that’s why it is gaining popularity in the fight against low testosterone.
What About Prostate Cancer?
There is no medical evidence to prove that TRT causes prostate cancer. But if cancer already exists in the prostate, additional testosterone supplementation will cause it to spread.
Therefore, your first step should be to do a PSA test and establish a baseline for the PSA levels in your bloodstream.
What Is PSA?
PSA stands for ‘Prostate Specific Antigen.’ PSA is a protein produced by prostate cells, and it serves as a general marker of prostate health. It also gives you a signal to dig a little deeper if something looks out of the ordinary.
You can measure your PSA numbers with a simple blood test.
Most healthy men have PSA levels of about 0.7ng/ml. Men with a PSA level that has stayed under 2 ng/ml for several previous years can undergo testosterone replacement therapy with a high degree of confidence.
Why Should You Check Your PSA Numbers?
After the age of 35, it’s always a good idea to keep tabs on how your body is holding up. As men age, good prostate health is an essential element of overall well-being.
Getting your PSA levels checked isn’t complicated, and they serve as a good sign of general prostate health. PSA levels that are above the normal range can indicate that something is wrong.
Men with prostate cancer usually have PSA levels that are above average. But high PSA numbers alone do not always mean the disease is present.
If It’s Not Cancer, What Else Could It Be?
Many factors can cause high PSA numbers on a blood test.
Your age, family history, and recent medical procedures could all result in heightened levels. Intense exercise or ejaculation in the previous 48 hours could also cause your numbers to rise.
A high PSA number by itself is only an indicator. But when a physician notices abnormal levels of PSA, he can conduct a DRE (digital rectal exam) to determine if there is a real risk.
A DRE is a test where a physician sticks a gloved, lubricated finger into your rectum and probes around for several seconds to detect any abnormalities. It sounds unpleasant, but it could save your life.
The PSA test and DRE together, serve as an early detection test.
Will TRT Cause PSA Levels to Increase?
In 2015, two doctors conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis to determine the effect of testosterone replacement therapy on PSA numbers. The National Institutes of Health published the study on its website.
A meta-analysis is a statistical approach that combines the results from multiple studies to increase power, improve estimates and resolve uncertainty. In the world of scientific studies, meta-analyses are considered the gold standard.
In their research, the doctors identified 511 articles and examined 15 different studies conducted on this topic.
Their systematic study concluded that testosterone replacement therapy showed did not increase PSA levels in men being treated for hypogonadism. The sole exception is when the treatment is administered directly into the muscle, and even then, the increase is minimal.
As long as you keep an eye on your PSA numbers, you can confidently consider TRT to treat your low testosterone levels.
Here at Mantality, we have a team of licensed physicians who will monitor your case and ensure your treatment is progressing at an optimal rate. Our procedure is FDA approved, so you can rest assured that the care you receive will be of the very best quality.
We understand that you may have questions about the treatment, insurance coverage or even the length of therapy. Head on over to our FAQ page where you will find answers to the most common questions.
If you need additional information, feel free to contact us at any of our 6 locations located across the country. We’re passionate about helping men become the best versions of themselves, and we look forward to serving you.