The PSA Debate Continues

The Lancet study, conducted in Europe, found a survival benefit with early diagnosis, but does not agree that the benefit outweighs some of the associated risks of the test.

The value of the PSA test to screen men for prostate cancer has long been debated, and a new study of 162,000 men may not resolve the issue.

The Lancet

The European study, reported Aug. 6 in , finds that widespread use of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood tests does reduce deaths from the disease by about one-fifth.

However, due to lingering doubts about whether the benefits of PSA screening outweigh the risks, the study's authors still recommend against routine use of the test at this time.

"PSA screening delivers a substantial reduction in prostate cancer deaths, similar or greater than that reported in screening for breast cancer," study lead author Fritz Schroder, of the Erasmus University Medical Center in the Netherlands, said in a journal news release.

"However, overdiagnosis occurs in roughly 40 percent of cases detected by screening resulting in a high risk of overtreatment and common side effects such as incontinence and impotence," he added.

Read the report here: http://bit.ly/1ogohQK

Source: US News