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Prostate Cancer Recurrence Albuquerque

While the survival rate for men with prostate cancer at the 5-year mark is close to 100%, recurrence is a reality for between 5% to 40% of patients.

Recurrence means that cancer cells have not been entirely eliminated by treatment and have been detected in follow up testing.

The prime indicator of recurrence is the return of higher levels of PSA (prostate-specific antigen).  Following prostate gland removal, PSA levels in patients are reduced to the point that they’re almost undetectable.  Following radiation, PSA is stable or very minimal.

Detecting recurrence

Following treatment for prostate cancer, you’ll present yourself for follow ups regularly.  During these follow ups, your doctor will test your blood for PSA levels and you’ll undergo a physical examination.  Any new symptoms should be shared with your doctor.

When PSA levels indicate that the cancer has returned or is metastasizing (spreading to other parts of the body), your doctor will order imaging tests like bone scans or X-Rays.  His recommendations will largely depend on your individual status.

Axumin is a radioactive tracer used in concert with the PET scan.  This diagnostic serves to detect and pinpoint recurrent cancer for biopsy or treatment.

Indicative factors

There are several red flags indicating that the prostate cancer has either returned or is spreading:

  • The presence of cancer cells in the pelvic lymph nodes can be a strong indicator of recurrence.
  • Larger tumors represent a greater risk of recurrence.
  • The Gleason score (derived from the results of a biopsy), when high, points to a risk of recurrence.
  • The stage at which the cancer was treated determines therapeutic approaches, as well as prognosis.

Treatment for prostate cancer recurrence

A great deal depends on the type of treatment you’ve had for the original prostate cancer, how extensive it is and where the recurrence is sited in your body.  Age and other factors will also be considered.

Ongoing research is examining the role of male hormones on prostate cancer.  Concurrently, drugs are being developed which seek to block the activity of these hormones.  Hormone therapy is an emerging treatment for prostate cancer which shows great promise.

Vaccines against prostate cancer are also in active development.  Presently, only Provenge is available as a treatment option.

Those with recurrent prostate cancer will discuss treatment options with their doctors at length.  Different patients have different needs and different stages of cancer.  There no global solution, for this reason.  Rather, there is a range of therapeutic applications which are tailored to the patient.

X-Ray Associates of New Mexico

X-Ray Associates of New Mexico has been bringing patients in this state the most up-to-date radiological imaging services available for more than 65 years.

With six locations across New Mexico, we’ve made diagnostic imaging more accessible for patients here.

Patients with prostate cancer recurrence in Albuquerque have a superior resource in our services, supported by focused customer care, personalized service and quality imaging.

We know that facing prostate cancer recurrence is a daunting prospect.  But we also know that our patients receive outstanding, compassionate care and the most accurate testing available.