Targeted screening program beneficial for prostate cancer screening

This is because the current first blood test for prostate cancer detects elevated levels of

. This test is not very reliable and gives false positive results. False warnings include not only false alarms when

To overcome this shortcoming, the researchers tested how well a new algorithm could predict prostate cancer by comparing blood samples from men who died after being diagnosed. Prostate cancer in men who have never been diagnosed with the disease.


Lead author Professor Sir Nicholas Wald (UCL Institute of Health Informatics) said: “A major drawback of the PSA test for prostate cancer The risk of false positives alone is higher, which can lead to unnecessary biopsies, invasiveness, and unnecessary treatment of a clinically insignificant cancer that is otherwise harmless.

What is false positive?

False positive results indicate a particular disease or condition in a person when non-existent. While in the opposite spectrum, a false negative result indicates that a condition or disease exists which is shown as non-existent or absent in the test.

What is the best way to screen for prostate cancer?

For the study, the researchers looked at data and blood samples from more than 21,000 men enrolled in the prospective study more than 40 years ago.

They analyzed several markers of prostate cancer in blood samples from 571 men who later died of or developed prostate cancer, compared with a control group of 2,169 men who had never been diagnosed. diagnosed with the disease.

They found that although hK2 is a relatively weak marker for prostate cancer, it is relatively independent of PSA so the two together yield a more accurate test (3 Trusted source
Prostate cancer screening based on multiple markers

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They grouped the results of the total PSA and hK2 tests based on the average distance they were present by the age of the participants. This was done to include age in the risk assessment.

All men who were estimated to have a one in 20 or higher risk of developing prostate cancer in the next 5 years were counted as “screen positive”.

They also found that if men 55 years of age and older are screened for at least 5 years using this risk-reducing method, 90% of cases of cancer will be detected, with only 1.2% of cases being false positives.

If the PSA test were used to self-screen for the disease, an 86% detection rate would be accompanied by a 2% false positive rate.

For comparison, if the risk-based approach was adjusted to have a detection rate of 86%, the false positive rate would be 0.5% – a three-quarter reduction.

How to improve prostate cancer screening?

The results of this study suggest that setting a higher risk range than men screened positives will reduce the number of false positives by three-quarters compared to a standard PSA test while at the same rate cancer (3 Trusted source
Prostate cancer screening based on multiple markers

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This new approach is innovative for prostate cancer, as it screens people based on their overall risk rather than the results of a single test. This is the same approach used for screening in pregnancy for certain maternal and fetal health conditions.

Using levels of two prostate cancer markers, PSA and hK2 (human kallikrein peptidase) refine prostate cancer screening. The use of PSA alone has significant screening limitations, but the addition of the hK2 marker offers real promise in significantly reducing mortality from this commonly diagnosed cancer in men (4 Trusted source
New risk algorithm will improve prostate cancer screening

Go to source).

The next step is to test the feasibility of this approach in practice with a pilot study inviting healthy men for screening. If this project is successful, this approach should be considered part of a national screening program for all men.

Presenter :

  1. Prostate Cancer: Statistics – ( Statistics)
  2. What is prostate cancer screening? – (
  3. Multi-marker risk-based prostate cancer screening – (
  4. New risk algorithm will improve prostate cancer screening – (

Source: Medindia

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