08/11/2008 - News

No Prostate Cancer Screening for Men 75 Years and Over

By: June Chen, MD


The US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has advised that men who are 75 years of age or older should not be screened for prostate cancer. In updated recommendations published in the August 5 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine, the USPSTF stated that the treatment of prostate cancer in these men, as well as those who have a life expectancy of 10 years or less, is likely to cause more harm than benefit .

This advice is a significant change from the guidelines issued by the USPSTF in 2002, and the USPSTF is the first major medical organization to suggest a cut-off age for prostate cancer screening. As yet, the benefit of routinely screening men under the age of 75 for prostate cancer using a laboratory test called prostate specific antigen (PSA) is still unproven.

The USPSTF advises doctors to discuss the potential benefits and harms of PSA screening with male patients under the age of 75 so that patients can use their personal preferences to guide their decisions about the blood test.


Ann Intern Med. 2008:149:185-191.

Created on: 08/11/2008
Reviewed on: 08/11/2008

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