Breakthrough methods of testing prostate cancer at the Medicover Hospital

Breakthrough methods of testing prostate cancer at the Medicover Hospital

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Every year doctors diagnose prostate cancer in about 10,000 Poles. When it comes to this type of cancer, the best chance for recovery is early diagnosis. That's why preventive screening is essential. Today, prostate cancer diagnostics include not only measurements of PSA levels, but also modern low-invasive and high-precision tests such as PCA3 genetic tests, 4Kscore molecular tests and multiparametric MRI tests.

Bone pain, haematuria, seminal blood, or urinary retention are symptoms that may indicate an advanced stage of the disease or metastases of prostate cancer. Therefore, all men aged 40 and over should undergo regular preventive examinations. Until recently, prostate cancer diagnostics was based on a per rectum examination and PSA levels.  [1] These tests, however, did not provide accurate diagnostics, because prostate cancer in men can develop completely asymptomatically. The minimally invasive PCA3 and 4Ksore tests turned out to be a real breakthrough in prostate cancer diagnostics.

Early diagnosis of the disease largely determines the success of treatment and provides a chance for complete recovery. Today's offer of diagnostic tests allows men to undergo complete preventive screening. Available solutions, unlike older methods, are painless, minimally invasive and do not require hospitalisation.

Doctor Marek Filipek, Head of the Medical Team at the HIFU CLINIC Prostate Cancer Treatment Centre

Elevated levels of PSA need not mean prostate cancer – they may be caused by benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) or inflammation, unrelated to prostate cancer. Therefore, a precise alternative to measuring PSA levels is the low-invasive PCA3 test, or the advanced genetic PCA3 gene expression test.

It allows you to determine the genetic risk for prostate cancer, and at the same time assess its progression. The test uses a urine sample collected after prior consultation with the urologist, and its results take about two weeks.

The PCA3 test is indicated for patients with suspected prostate cancer despite not having it confirmed by a biopsy, genetically affected men whose father, uncles or grandfather suffered from prostate cancer, and when tumours were detected by a biopsy and it is necessary to assess the risk of progress and the aggressiveness of the disease.

The 4Kscore is another test that makes it possible to estimate the risk of developing aggressive prostate cancer, even 20 years in advance.

This is particularly important for those with family members who have suffered from this type of cancer. Prostate cancer is genetically conditioned and therefore these people are in the high risk group. The 4Kscore-Test is a specially developed diagnostic algorithm that takes into account the level of up to four kallikreins in blood plasma. This makes it possible to detect prostate cancer at a very early stage of the disease

Doctor Marek Filipek, Head of the Medical Team at the HIFU CLINIC Prostate Cancer Treatment Centre

The test uses a blood sample. The result, available after about four weeks, indicates the possible need for a biopsy.

Precise diagnostics with the Multiparametric MRI test

The Multiparametric MRI test is a real progress in prostate cancer diagnostics. This is a test that simultaneously allows the oncologist to locate suspicious cancerous foci, and to determine whether possible tumour lesions have affected any other organs (e.g. lymph nodes). Prostate biopsy with an MRI allows the urologist to accurately biopsy the suspicious foci. Based on the image and detailed description, the specialist recommends further treatment for the patient. During the procedure, 5 or 6 specimens are taken from each prostate (standard biopsy) and in addition from several sites are suspected of having cancerous growths. The procedure itself takes 30 to 60 minutes and can be performed under local or general anaesthesia. It is necessary to start the patient on antibiotics prior to the procedure.

The test is recommended for patients for whom prostate biopsy is indicated. All of the above prostate cancer diagnostic tests are available at the Medicover Hospital through a partnership with the HIFU Clinic.  

[1] PSA, or prostate-specific antigen is a glycoprotein produced by glandular epithelial cells, that allows to diagnose and monitor not only prostate cancer, but also benign prostatic hyperplasia.

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