Oncology Central

Screening for prostate cancer in the elderly

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Prostate cancer screening is extremely controversial these days. Although nearly 30,000 men die annually of the disease, a large randomized (although many patients in the nonscreening arm were screened) PLCO trial conducted in the USA showed no survival advantage for screening (rate ratio: 1.15; 95% CI: 0.86–1.54) [1]. In addition, despite large screening efforts in the USA, the rate of death from prostate cancer has largely remained unchanged. Epidemiological studies looking at the death rate from prostate cancer across various countries have found that death from prostate cancer often appears to be similar between countries that screen for cancer and those that do not [101]. Furthermore, a recent Cochrane review performed a meta-analysis using the aforementioned prostate-specific antigen (PSA) screening studies, including the PLCO and ERSPC studies.

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