Part II Gary & Me on consent and PSAs plus some shoptalk
Rick Davis, founder of the AnCan Foundation, which offers support platforms for prostate cancer and other diseases, supports routine PSA testing. Dr. David Carter, a testing guru at University of California, San Diego, has called for routine PSA testing to detect more prostate cancers.
Here's what Rick has to say:
"I am opposed to consensual agreement to PSA testing.
The PSA test is about information - not treatment. As a patient you have every right to decide which treatment is right for you. But you can't make that decision if you don't know there is an issue. 1 in 5 men or more are currently diagnosed with metastatic prostate cancer that could kill them. And between 1 in 7 to 9 men (depending on race) are diagnosed with prostate cancer. That means around 1 in 35 men carry fatal prostate cancer. Should we as a society stand by until it is too late to treat, when early intervention could prevent those deaths.
I say NO.
"Once we initiate consensual agreement on tests to administer, where does it stop. Our PCPs are already stressed and in short supply. For them to have to explain every test they order is over-the-top, in my books. Do they need to tell you why they are taking your blood pressure, or testing mineral or protein levels that may also signify the possibility of cancer. Shared decision making and consensual agreement are definitely appropriate, but only once you know you may have an issue."