SAFE TO STOP?
ANCHOR LEAD: IS THERE AN AGE AT WHICH MEN CAN SAFELY FORGO PSA TESTING FOR PROSTATE CANCER? ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
When is it safe for men to stop having their blood tested for PSA, prostate specific antigen, as one screening test for prostate cancer? A Johns Hopkins study of over 800 men led by Edward Schaeffer seems to conclude that many men over the age of 75 can give this screening test a miss.
SCHAEFFER: In this cohort of man, no man over the age of 75 with a PSA value below 3 died from prostate cancer. Of all those men in that cohort, only one man got a diagnosis of high risk prostate cancer and he’s still alive in the study. So this was a very remarkable finding and suggested to us that this may be a cohort of men who may not need additional PSA testing over the age of 75. :26
Schaeffer emphasizes that men with a PSA value over 3 or those whose value is rising rapidly do need further evaluation, which may include rectal examination, ultrasound, and perhaps a prostate biopsy. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.