Panel urges men to avoid routine prostate cancer testing

Health

A panel of international experts suggest men should avoid routine testing for prostate cancer.

The group says the harm the prostate specific antigen test can do outweighs the small benefit. They recommend men at higher risk talk to their doctor before making a decision about testing.

Dr. Jean Joseph, a urologist at URMC, spoke with us Thursday, and gave us a better idea of when prostate screening is not beneficial to the patient.

He explains, “To screen a 20-year-old man for prostate cancer that’s really – we don’t see cancer in that age group… At the same time, to screen someone who is 90 some years old, who are unhealthy with other medical problems, where prostate cancer is unlikely to take that person from us, that doesn’t make sense.”

Dr. Joseph says if someone is in the age range where prostate cancer is seen, or where treating prostate cancer would have an impact on prolonging that person’s life, then screening makes sense.

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