The recent controversial recommendation against PSA-based screening for prostate cancer contained a number of significant errors of fact, interpretation and statistics. First and foremost it ignores the fact the PSA screening has lowered the death rate from prostate cancer by nearly 40% over the last two decades.
Before PSA testing was commonplace, over 50% of patients had metastatic disease at the time of diagnosis. With PSA testing, it is now less than 20%.
Both the American Urological Association and the American Cancer Society agree that PSA screening is indicated for properly informed, asymptomatic, healthy men with at least 10 year life expectancy and in high risk groups (race, family history).
Historically many men have been reluctant to be screened for prostate cancer or even receive regular checkups. We’ve made great strides in fostering awareness and empowering men to be their own, best health advocates. Unfortunately these new recommendations will lead to confusion and will set back many of the advances we have made.
Not every man needs to take action on his prostate cancer but they deserve to know.
At UCA, we believe that it is important to present the option of PSA screening for the appropriate patient. In addition, we make sure that a full discussion of the pros and cons occurs before a biopsy is scheduled.
We have a great deal of additional detailed information available about PSA testing, but wanted to keep this communication brief. We are always available to answer your if you feel that would be helpful.