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Harvard Health Blog
Read the latest posts from experts at Harvard Health Publishing covering a variety of health topics and perspectives on medical news.
One couple’s story: Handling prostate cancer in the face of differing biopsies
Elliot and Elizabeth Boyd share their experience with a prostate cancer diagnosis, explain their next steps in light of seemingly contradictory test results, and offer advice to those coping with their diagnosis and weighing treatment options.
Raising prostate cancer awareness among African Americans: Two patients’ stories
Two prostate cancer survivors talk about the importance of prostate cancer education among African Americans and other men at high risk.
Androgen-independent prostate cancer: A patient’s story
Ken Gannon talks about his 13 year battle with prostate cancer and his experiences with second-line hormone therapies, investigational drugs, and four clinical trials, one of which nearly killed him.
A patient’s story: Why one man opted for lifestyle changes instead of treatment
Patient Ben Hunter explains why he decided to postpone treatment for prostate cancer and the lifestyle changes he made immediately following his diagnosis.
Choosing — and sticking with — active surveillance: A patient’s story
Patient Jeffrey Caruso explains why he decided to pursue active surveillance and under what circumstances he would opt to treat his prostate cancer.
A patient’s story: Why one man chose robotic-assisted laparoscopic prostatectomy
After talking with numerous medical professionals and asking friends about how they treated their prostate cancers, financial services executive Steve Henley opted to have a robotic-assisted laparoscopic prostatectomy. In this interview, he explains what factors went into that decision.
Drug combo better at easing BPH than either drug alone
Study shows that taking both dutasteride (Avodart) and tamsulosin (Flomax) might be more effective at easing symptoms than taking just one.
Continuous vs. intermittent hormone therapy (IHT): No survival difference
Given the beneficial effects and the lack of a survival difference, intermittent hormone therapy may be a preferred regimen for men with advanced prostate cancer.
Midlife PSA tests may predict prostate cancer diagnosis up to 25 years later
According to a 2007 Swedish study, a PSA test done between the ages of 44 and 50 may predict whether or not a man will develop prostate cancer later in life.
Initial PSA tests can’t distinguish lethal prostate cancers
In a study of over 250 men, Swedish researchers found that neither the initial PSA level nor its rate of increase in a two-year period predicted which men had lethal versus indolent cancers.
Can nerve grafts restore erectile function?
Studies have shown that some men who have their neurovascular bundles removed during a radical prostatectomy may regain erectile function with nerve grafts. But a patient’s best bet for preserving erectile function is to find an experienced surgeon.
Treating prostatitis: Any cause for optimism?
Standard treatments for prostatitis, including antibiotics, anti-inflammatory medications, and alpha blockers, are often ineffective. Patients might find relief by using drugs currently in clinical trials or nontraditional therapies such as biofeedback and myofascial trigger release, a form of massage.
Prostate cancer risk in African Americans
African American men have, by far, the highest incidence of prostate cancer in the world. They are also more than twice as likely to die of the disease as white American men. No single factor — diet, obesity, socioeconomic status, or biology — accounts for the disparity, and the search for an explanation continues.
Blood calcium levels may be linked to prostate cancer death
Research finds that men with high blood calcium levels are more likely to develop fatal prostate cancer than men with lower blood calcium levels.
No “home run” for proton radiation–at least not yet
A clinical trial of proton radiation for early prostate cancer found that the treatment is safe and well-tolerated by patients, but probably no better than other, less expensive forms of radiation.
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