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  1. #1
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    Somewhat high PSA no. due to cycling?

    So my PSA no. has gone up a bit to 4.4 (I just turned 60). I saw the urologist today and he mentioned that a lot of factors could be the cause including cycling. Unfortunately, I failed to follow up on that comment.

    Have any of you heard of cycling causing high PSA readings? Has anyone stopped cycling (for a short time) to see if the no. would go down?

    Thanks,

    Cliff

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    Raw number doesn't look too high. Yes, most anything that irritates the prostate can cause an inflated number. But the real concern would be whether your saddle and riding style is interfering with the blood supply to your genitalia as well as irritating the prostate. Might try standing up periodically or changing saddles, etc.

  3. #3
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    From my Consultant- Cycling does not cause prostate problems. It may aggravate it but does not cause it.

    And hate to say it- Elevated PSA readings come about for many of us at our age. Not always a Cancer problem but MUST be checked on a regular basis if your reading has started to rise.
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  4. #4
    www.ocrebels.com Rick@OCRR's Avatar
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    Cycling, or any form of heavy exercise before the blood is drawn can cause higher than normal PSA numbers. I made the mistake of going in to have blood taken for testing the day after a hammer-fest on Glendora Mountain Road.

    Only after the results came back did I check with a couple of friends of mine (both of whom are doctors) who confirmed that extremely high levels of exercise (yeah, hammering while climbing!) can cause artificially elevated cholesterol and PSA levels/numbers.

    And yes, I did suffer through the biopsy!

    Rick / OCRR



  5. #5
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    This is the big problem with any isolated snapshot reading, be it serum cholesterol, serum glucose, blood pressure, or PSA, all of which vary widely during any typical day's activities. If you are going to have your PSA measured, then commit to doing so periodically and under consistent conditions, to establish reliable personal baseline statistics, against which you can easily spot a fast increase, which is the primary danger signal.
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  6. #6
    Senior Moment bikegeek57's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Latitude65 View Post
    most anything that irritates the prostate can cause an inflated number.
    I know he did not intend to do that but that broke me up.

  7. #7
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    Good reading here for my future testing. I'll remember to lay off a day or two before to get best possible "resting" readings as I've had in the past.
    I reserve the right to be wrong at any time. :D

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    I'd get additional testing to eliminate cancer. Some are fast growing and can kill quickly irrespective of what's claimed in the popular media. I've studied the subject extensively since I've had two bouts of prostate cancer, but have not studied it in the last two years. There are other causes of high PSA, but no one that I know ever had one of those. They all had cancer.

    The next stage would be additional psa to verify the first then a free & total test assuming you've also had the "finger test". I failed the free & total test (indicating a cancer) before they ever felt it or saw it on ultrasound.

    In my neighborhood, they get real worried about anything that high that doesn't go down soon. In my case, I'm glad they do. It saved me from more intrusive surgery and increased the probability of a cure. My wife has a friend who's son had higher psa and he was gone in less than a year. He was in his early 40's.

    Rare of course, but you never know.

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  9. #9
    Senior Member ntime60's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Latitude65
    [most anything that irritates the prostate can cause an inflated number.]

    Quote Originally Posted by bikegeek57 View Post
    I know he did not intend to do that but that broke me up.
    It cracked me up as well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ntime60 View Post
    Originally Posted by Latitude65
    [most anything that irritates the prostate can cause an inflated number.]

    It cracked me up as well.
    Now if I had said "member" that would be funny. But "number" ??

    By the way, we should keep in mind the Gold Standard is the Digital Rectal Exam. The OP didn't say if one was performed or the results.

  11. #11
    Wheezing Geezer Bud Bent's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick@OCRR View Post
    Cycling, or any form of heavy exercise before the blood is drawn can cause higher than normal PSA numbers. I made the mistake of going in to have blood taken for testing the day after a hammer-fest on Glendora Mountain Road.

    Only after the results came back did I check with a couple of friends of mine (both of whom are doctors) who confirmed that extremely high levels of exercise (yeah, hammering while climbing!) can cause artificially elevated cholesterol and PSA levels/numbers.

    And yes, I did suffer through the biopsy!

    Rick / OCRR
    I did not realize that. I have had single instances of both elevated cholesterol and PSA. Maybe I'll make sure I don't do more than an easy ride the day before blood tests in the future.
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  12. #12
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    Thanks for all of the replies. They did do the digital rectal exam and the urologist said that it was somewhat enlarged. He kind of gave me a choice of doing another PSA blood test in three months or doing a biopsy.

    I chose the biopsy since I'll have more peace of mind with the results (assuming that they turn out negative), but now I'm having second thoughts since I'm right on the borderline (4.4 at age 60) and it could be overkill (bad choice of words).

    How painful is the biopsy? I know that it shouldn't influence my decision, but at least I can prepare myself. I had a sigmoidoscopy a few years ago and that was excruciating. I demanded a colonoscopy the next time, because I knew that they'd put me under.

    Now, I'm leaning toward another PSA test in three months and having it "optimized" by staying off the bike and avoiding other activities. If it's still high, than I'll do the biopsy.

    I'm in an HMO so cost isn't a factor in the decision.

    Sometimes, I wish the doctor would just make the decision for me.

    Thanks,

  13. #13
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    For peace of mind have the Biopsy. That is the ONLY definite way to find out if it is Cancer- or not. I can tell you- the worry at the back of the mind as to whether it is or not will get through to you. There is some pain with the Biopsy but NOT severe. I even had mine without any Anaesthetic but that was my choice.

    And If it is Cancer- the quicker you act- the better the end result.

    And I had a Radical Prostatectomy in 2001. PSA of 16- all 6 Samples were cancerous and I was Lucky in that there was not a longer delay in getting treatment. And a workmate of mine has a PSA of 27- has a biopsy every 6 months and No PCa.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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    I had a prostate biopsy twice and neither were painful. A bit uncomfortable at the most. My urologist numbed the prostate first. Make sure yours does the same.

    Many things can cause the PSA number to be high, but the bottom line is you need to find out why it's high. Prostate cancer is the second leading killer of men in the USA. If you catch it early it's quite treatable.

    Regards
    Mike

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    Quote Originally Posted by RoboCheme View Post

    How painful is the biopsy?
    Take it from me, not as painful as the alternative if it is the big "C"
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    Gee, getting medical advice from a bunch of strangers posting anonymously on a bicycling board?????

    When it comes to personal health there is absolutely no substitute for personal research and knowledge gained from authoritative sources. In general prostate cancer is slow growing and does not kill. In fact, depending on individual specifics it is sometimes best to do nothing about it because by the time it gets to the deadly stange you have already died from something else. Another factor is the unreliability of the PSA test.

    If, as you say, your DRE was essentially normal for your age and given the PSA number you gave t is reasonable to give it some time and retest. But, the final decision is yours, not mine or anyone else's who is posting here.

    In fact that is exactly what I did, except that my number was over 10, and my second test came back normal. So, have all the tests since then.

    Don't be panicked into anything. You have time to make a calm, reasoned decision.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Latitude65 View Post
    Gee, getting medical advice from a bunch of strangers posting anonymously on a bicycling board?????

    When it comes to personal health there is absolutely no substitute for personal research and knowledge gained from authoritative sources. In general prostate cancer is slow growing and does not kill. In fact, depending on individual specifics it is sometimes best to do nothing about it because by the time it gets to the deadly stange you have already died from something else. Another factor is the unreliability of the PSA test.

    If, as you say, your DRE was essentially normal for your age and given the PSA number you gave t is reasonable to give it some time and retest. But, the final decision is yours, not mine or anyone else's who is posting here.

    In fact that is exactly what I did, except that my number was over 10, and my second test came back normal. So, have all the tests since then.

    Don't be panicked into anything. You have time to make a calm, reasoned decision.
    Hey, man. lighten up. I never asked for advice. I asked if anyone has reduced their PSA number by cutting out cycling and I asked how painful a biopsy is.

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    Not heavy at all. If you didn't want this kind of response you shouldn't have made the post here. If you were happy with what your doc said you shouldn't have made the post here. If you had done your proper research you shouldn't have made your post here. So, if you aren't happy with what you get then too bad.

  19. #19
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    Apparently, they must not do the free & total psa test anymore if they go directly to a biopsy. If the cancer has not spread throughout the total prostate, a single biopsy may miss it. A friend of mine had a rare case where his psa was high but they couldn't find it. He had 5 biopsies all at the same time.

    As to the pain, they tell you no. The actual biopsy didn't hurt me. But when I got home the pain put me on the floor. Luckily, I had some left over prescription pain killer from a surgery the previous year and that took care of it. I warned my friend and he asked for a pain killer he could take just in case. He had the same problem when he got home.

    Al

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    I had zero pain "after" the biopsy. A typical biopsy takes 12 samples at different areas of the gland. As I said before, your PSA number is abnormal. It may be nothing serious, but you should find out the cause. Most urologists seem to think that cycling has little effect on the number. Just to be on the safe side, stop riding a couple days before you take the test.

  21. #21
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Latitude65 View Post
    In general prostate cancer is slow growing and does not kill. In fact, depending on individual specifics it is sometimes best to do nothing about it because by the time it gets to the deadly stange you have already died from something else. Another factor is the unreliability of the PSA test.

    Don't be panicked into anything. You have time to make a calm, reasoned decision.
    First inkling in January- Saw consultant in March- Biopsy in April and RP in June. I was lucky-as I was later told. While waiting for the Post mortem on the Prostate on the lab bench- the cancer split from the prostate. That is when it gets lethal. Prostate cancer may not kill you but the Cancer getting into the bones- liver- lungs or Kidneys will.

    And true- Many more men die with PCa than die from it. But get it checked out ASAP. If negative fine but still keep a regular check on it.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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    The cancer had been totally contained in the prostate the lab concluded after mine was removed. Well, not exactly. Six years later it came back. Since they can't locate the cancer cells, they assume that they are located in the general area of the prostate. So that's where I had the radiation treatments.

    So far 5-years with no recurrence. The advantage of choosing to have it surgically removed is that if it returns, you have a second crack at it with radiation. If start with radiation, then your only option is hormone therapy which really eats away your muscle mass. I had that too as part of an experimental program in conjunction with both the operation and the radiation.

    According to my urologist, when the cancer gets to the bone, that's it. It's apparently very painful.

    Man, I sure hope that I haven't gone over the line "giving advice anonymously".

    Al

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    Sometimes there's a problem

    HI,
    I have a couple friends who are in the 40"s has a positive Biopsy and opted for the needle seeding with radioactive isotopes it had a very good outcome for both of them with the least tramma to the surrounding tissues. and they have been doing very well without the surgery to remove the prostrate. They both have had no changes in sexual performance either. Prostrate removal can have some risks.to delicate nerves in the area.

    PS: Another common problem is the Dr does the rectal exam as aprt of the physical and then sends you to the lab for your PSA the finger wave can spike the PSA.
    Doug
    Last edited by djnzlab1; 08-14-09 at 07:19 PM.

  24. #24
    Bike Junkie roccobike's Avatar
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    Prostate problems have been associated with cycling but Urologists do not agree that cycing causes or contributes to the problem. My doctor told me to ride my bikes because exercise is good for prostate problems. There's a Urologist who posts over on the Road Bike forum who has posted that riding bikes does not cause prostatitus.
    As for the Biopsy, I didn't feel a thing, until the pain medication wore off. Then I had soreness. No big deal.
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by djnzlab1 View Post
    HI,
    I have a couple friends who are in the 40"s has a positive Biopsy and opted for the needle seeding with radioactive isotopes it had a very good outcome for both of them with the least tramma to the surrounding tissues. and they have been doing very well without the surgery to remove the prostrate. They both have had no changes in sexual performance either. Prostrate removal can have some risks.to delicate nerves in the area.

    Doug
    The last statistics I've read on the subject indicated that the all the current techniques of surgery and radiation have about the same success rates which is something like 80% I think. The surgery does have risks.

    I chose surgery since if it reoccurs, you still have the radiation to fall back on for a possible second cure. If you have the radiation first, surgery is not an option nor is more radiation if it reoccurs. Your only option then is the hormone treatment which is a really bad way to go through life, but not as bad as chemo used in other cancers. I had to endure a 3 month and a 9 month period of it and it's not fun.

    Also, a person in his forty's will well outlive the bodies tolerance the the hormone treatment which is about 15 years if I remember correctly. I hope for his sake it doesn't return or they come up with another treatment in the next decade or two.

    According to my urologist, the new robotic assisted operation has a higher risk of incontinence. He won't use it. Other's in his office have gone back to manual. He learned that about a year ago at a conference. At that time the results were not yet published.

    Something to check on if the time comes. Also, to insure that your doctor is well informed, a second opinion is a good idea. I chose a university research doctor for mine with the encouragement of my urologist. The thinking was that the university setting promotes having the latest information on the science and on the outcomes/risks.

    Practicing doctors often don't keep up and if they do, the read only the abstracts of journal articles and miss important details. I wanted a detail man.

    Al

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