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ACTIVE SURVEILLANCE

FOR SOME MEN WITH PROSTATE CANCER, WATCHING THEM CLOSELY IS MORE APPROPRIATE THAN IMMEDIATE TREATMENT, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

Active surveillance is a strategy for keeping a close eye on men who’ve been told they have prostate cancer but whose disease doesn’t seem to need immediate treatment.  Ballantine Carter, a urologist at Johns Hopkins and one of the strategy’s pioneers, describes where this approach fits in.

CARTER: Most men know about the prostate specific antigen or PSA test used to detect prostate cancer early.  And most men know that routine PSA testing saves lives.  However, routine testing with PSA can lead to unnecessary treatments in some older men.  My colleagues and I have been working to identify those men who don’t need immediate treatment for prostate cancer.  In those men another option, which is careful monitoring or active surveillance, may be a very reasonable approach.   :30

Carter says that if PSA levels rise suddenly or other symptoms appear, men can receive immediate treatment of their prostate cancer with no compromise in results.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey..


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