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Calculator Predicts Prostate Cancer Survival

Online Tool Offers Personalized Prognosis of Prostate Cancer
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WebMD Health News

April 13, 2004 -- An online calculator may help men with prostate cancer estimate the impact the disease will have on their lives.

Researchers say the prostate cancer calculator can provide a realistic estimate of a man's 10-year prostate cancer survival chances. The tool also allows them to compare the impact of cancer vs. noncancer health risks.

Once diagnosed with prostate cancer, men can enter their age, race, clinical characteristics of their prostate cancer, and the type of treatment being provided and the calculator provides a personalized prognosis.

Tool Estimates Prostate Cancer Survival

The interactive tool was developed using the results of a study comparing survival rates of more than 1,600 men with prostate cancer that had not spread outside the prostate. The men were compared with about 4,500 similarly matched men who did not have prostate cancer.

Researchers say by using the tool, men may often find that health risks other than their prostate cancer may have as much or more of an impact on their chances of long-term survival.

In fact, the study showed that while 33% of the men died during the next 10 years, just 7% of the men died from prostate cancer.

It's important to note that all these men had early prostate cancer. Regular checkups by a doctor can help diagnose prostate cancer at an early stage and thus significantly increase the chance of curing the cancer.

The results of the study appear in the April 2004 issue of the Journal of Urology, and the calculator is available at www.prostatecalculator.org.

In addition, the prostate calculator tool allows men to forecast the likelihood of:

  • Discovering prostate cancer from a biopsy
  • Prostate cancer spreading outside the prostate
  • Prostate cancer spreading to lymph nodes
  • Increasing PSA levels (prostate blood test) after surgery

The developers say no personal information is collected by the site, and no specific treatments or health care providers are promoted.

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