Screening for Early Detection of Prostatic Cancer
A. Neheman, Y. Shotland, Y. Metz, A. Stein
Dept. of Urology, Carmel Hospital, Lady Davis Medical Center, Haifa
Prostatic cancer (PC) is second only to lung cancer as a cause of cancer mortality in men word-wide. In Israel it is the most common cause of cancer mortality in men, after lung cancer and colo-rectal cancer.
We screened, for the first time in Israel, for prostatic cancer using serum levels of PSA and a digital rectal examination (DRE). The purpose was not only to diagnose PC but also to increase public awareness of the condition.
300 men in the Haifa area who met statistical criteria for early diagnosis of PC participated. They filled a questionnaire regarding risk factors for PC (age, family history (FH) of prostatic and breast cancer, cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, previous PSA sampling) and were examined. Those who had out-of-ragne, age-related PSA values, or a pathologic DRE underwent trans-rectal ultrasound (TRUS) examination and guided biopsy of the prostate. Those with a positive biopsy for PC underwent radical prostatectomy or radiation therapy.
41 (14.3%) had out-of-range, age-related PSA levels and 10 (3.5%) had a pathologic DRE. 39 (13.3%) underwent TRUS and biopsy and 6 (2.04%) had clinically significant PC, all early stages (Gleason 4-6).
Correlation between age and PSA has been proven statistically significant (p<0.05). Symptoms of urinary tract obstruction and nocturia were related to a high PSA (p=0.035 and 0.002, respectively). Those with PC had at least 1 symptom of urinary tract obstruction; 6 (15.3%) who underwent TRUS and biopsy and a FH of prostate cancer. However, no subject with a FH of PC had biopsy-proven cancer. Those with PC had PSA values from 4.9 to 31.8 ng/ml (9.6 median). Age-related PSA had a positive predictive value of 17.1%.
Results of our annual screening for early detection of PC using age-related PSA, and DRE are encouraging: cases detected were clinically significant and treatable. It would appear that screening for PC will result in decreasing the incidence of metastatic cancer and therefore mortality.