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Question
In terms of results in the reference range reported by lab work, what is considered within the norm?

I had the surgery and several months later radiation to address positive margin issues.  For past 8 years I've been tested every six months and PSA level (determined by the Abbott Architect assay method) has always been <0.05 with reference range of (0-4) Ng/ML =1=

Last report was based on Siemens chemiluminescent method and results were:
< 0.1 and reference range given as: <OR = 4.0 ng/ml.
I understand that assay methods cannot be used interchangeably. What is the "within the norm" range for the Siemens chemiluminescent method?
Thank you.

Answer
Hello Paul:

You are right, ideally PSA levels should be tested on the same equipment with the same methodology. This becomes troublesome if the value falls within normal for one equipment and outside the range for another system.

In your case <0.1 is not worrisome. The normal refrence range for PSA is 0-4 ng/ml. The detection sensitivity of various  equipment / methodologies can vary, some can detect upto 0.5 hence if value is 0.5 it will be reported as <=0.5, others can dtect absence of PSA because they can truly detect"0"
The detection range is different from normal range for PSA whihc is always 0-4 ng/ml
Any value less than 4 indicates normal size and function of the prostate.  

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Neha Dahiya MD

Expertise

Help patients understand the medical terminology of their lab results and / or tissue biopsy reports.

Experience

I am a pathologist and director of clinical laboratory services. I have been a practicing pathologist for last 9 years in a 350 bed multi specialty hospital laboratory in India.

Organizations
Indian association of pathologists and microbiologists.
International Academy of Cytology
International association of Pathologists - Indian division
Indian association of Cytology

Education/Credentials
MD (pathology) MBA

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