For the past 20 years studies have shown a nearly 40% decrease in deaths from prostate cancer, although there has been no increase in incidence during this interval. A follow-up study of the European Randomized Study of Screening for Prostate Cancer was published in the New England Journal of Medicine. The study confirmed what physicians have known for years: PSA screening is a valuable life-saving tool. Six months ago, the U.S. Preventive Task Force recommended that healthy men should no longer receive PSA tests as a part of their routine cancer screening. This decision against routine PSA screening was made by a panel that does not include urologists or oncologists.
Dr. Deepak A. Kapoor wrote, “What is particularly disturbing about all this discussion is that PSA screening itself is not a treatment, but merely a simple blood test. There are essentially no risks to screening, and with screening results, patients have the information they need to make a better informed decision about their health.” Dr. Kapoor also stated “the decision on how to screen and treat prostate cancer should stay where it has always been: between the patients and their physicians.”
CPC agrees with Dr. Kapoor. Prostate cancer screenings, which include the PSA blood test and digital rectal exam, help detect prostate cancer in the earlier stages. Patients should be able to get all of the information possible to make an informed decision regarding their health.