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Gleason, Gleason, Gleason! Could someone please define?

mimbyus's picture
Posts: 18
Joined: Mar 2013

I'm 58 yrs old, scored PSA 11, DRE found "lump;" a-symptomatic, had ultrasound biopsy. Tomorrow I see urolgogist for results of biopsy. Since initial diagnosis I've been researching PC everywhere, and run into this "Gleason Score" thing mentioned constantly, yet no one ever takes the trouble to actually DEFINE it!

It seems to be an important topic. Could someone please explain this score to me? To my inexperienced eyes it looks formidable, like trigonemetry! As math has always been my greatest failing, please explain in simple terms!



hopeful and opt...
Posts: 2331
Joined: Apr 2009

I am sorry that you are posting here. I hope that you do not become a member of our club.

You mention that your PSA is high, as you know the number , although an indicator is somewhat imprecise, and can be affected by exercise , a hard stool(which may or may not have something to do with your health condition or an urinary infection.

Well at any rate you have done the biopsy, the results of which  are critical in managing your case.

Basically the Gleason score tells the aggressiveness of the cancer. The higher the number the more aggressive the cancer. 10 is the highest; this would be a 5+5=10, and the most aggressive.

Each of the first two parts of the Gleason go from 1 to 5.

AS you see above there are two parts to determine the total. So say if your Gleason was a 3+4+7, the first number indicates the score of the cancer that is found most often, so this score is less aggressive than a score of 4+3=7 . The first number is the most predominent.

So basically if you are diagnosed with the beast your score can be say a 3+3=6, which is less aggressive, and your cancer may be indolent, that is not likely to spread.

A 3+4=7 is a mildly aggressive cancer.

A 4+3=7 is more aggresive than a 3+4=7. and so on.

Basically your choice of treatment changes when you evaluate the Gleason score, and the INVOLVEMENT, percent cancer in each core as well other physical factors , and what will work for you.

Mimbyus, this is important , ask your doc for a copy of the pathology report, and let us know what is happening , we will give you our inputs....

Good luck tomorrow.

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