Prostate cancer screening benefit very low, even after 13 years - Abstract

The 13-year results of the European Randomised Study of Screening for Prostate Cancer (ERSPC) have recently been published.

Authors presented a 'substantial' reduction in prostate cancer-specific mortality of 20%. However, absolute risk reduction is very small (0.11 per 1000 person years) and no effect was shown on all-cause mortality. Additionally, the number of unnecessary prostate cancer diagnoses and the number of diagnostic procedures for this small effect are considerable. We believe that the discussion on the introduction of a population-based screening programme for prostate cancer could be at an end. Prostate cancer detection should be limited to men with signs or symptoms of the disease. Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) testing in non-symptomatic men should be a patient's personal decision, after weighing the pros and cons of any subsequent procedures.

Written by:
Blanker MH, Noordzij MA.   Are you the author?
Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, Universitair Medisch Centrum Groningen, afd. Huisartsgeneeskunde, Groningen.

Reference: Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd. 2014;158:A8349.

PubMed Abstract
PMID: 25492737

Article in Dutch. Prostate Cancer Section