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Prostate Cancer Prevention (PDQ®): Prevention - Health Professional Information [NCI] - Significance

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Treatment options available for prostate cancer include radical prostatectomy, external-beam radiation therapy, brachytherapy, cryotherapy, focal ablation, androgen deprivation with luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone analogs and/or antiandrogens, intermittent androgen deprivation, cytotoxic agents, and active surveillance. Of all the means of management, only radical prostatectomy has been tested in a randomized clinical trial to assess survival benefit. In this study, prostatectomy was found to be superior to surveillance in men with localized prostate cancer in terms of reduced rates of metastases (relative hazard [RH] = 0.63; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.41–0.96) and disease specific (RH = 0.5; 95% CI, 0.27–0.91) and overall mortalities.[13] The relative efficacy of radical prostatectomy to the other forms of treatment has not been adequately addressed.[14] Confounding issues in the treatment of prostate cancer include side effects with treatment, inability to predict the natural history of a given cancer, patient comorbidity that may affect an individual's likelihood of surviving long enough to be at risk for disease morbidity and mortality, and an increasing body of evidence suggesting that with careful PSA monitoring following treatment, a substantial fraction of patients may suffer disease recurrence .[15]

Because of considerable uncertainty regarding the efficacy of treatment and the difficulty with selecting patients for whom there is a known risk of disease progression, opinion in the medical community is divided regarding screening for carcinoma of the prostate. While both digital rectal examination and PSA screening have demonstrated reasonable performance characteristics (sensitivity, specificity, and positive predictive value) for the early detection of prostate cancer, conflicting outcomes of randomized trials examining the impact of screening on mortality has led to some organizations to recommend for and others to recommend against screening.[16,17]

The tremendous impact of prostate cancer on the U.S. population and the financial burden of the disease for both patients and society have led to an increased interest in primary disease prevention.

References:

  1. American Cancer Society.: Cancer Facts and Figures 2013. Atlanta, Ga: American Cancer Society, 2013. Available online. Last accessed September 5, 2013.
  2. Sakr WA, Haas GP, Cassin BF, et al.: The frequency of carcinoma and intraepithelial neoplasia of the prostate in young male patients. J Urol 150 (2 Pt 1): 379-85, 1993.
  3. Hølund B: Latent prostatic cancer in a consecutive autopsy series. Scand J Urol Nephrol 14 (1): 29-35, 1980.
  4. Altekruse SF, Kosary CL, Krapcho M, et al.: SEER Cancer Statistics Review, 1975-2007. Bethesda, Md: National Cancer Institute, 2010. Also available online. Last accessed September 23, 2013.
  5. Horm JW, Sondik EJ: Person-years of life lost due to cancer in the United States, 1970 and 1984. Am J Public Health 79 (11): 1490-3, 1989.
  6. Cooperberg MR, Carroll PR, Klotz L: Active surveillance for prostate cancer: progress and promise. J Clin Oncol 29 (27): 3669-76, 2011.
  7. Lu-Yao GL, Albertsen PC, Moore DF, et al.: Outcomes of localized prostate cancer following conservative management. JAMA 302 (11): 1202-9, 2009.
  8. Jones CU, Hunt D, McGowan DG, et al.: Radiotherapy and short-term androgen deprivation for localized prostate cancer. N Engl J Med 365 (2): 107-18, 2011.
  9. Gleason DF, Mellinger GT: Prediction of prognosis for prostatic adenocarcinoma by combined histological grading and clinical staging. J Urol 111 (1): 58-64, 1974.
  10. Gleason DF: Histologic grading and clinical staging of prostatic carcinoma. In: Tannenbaum M: Urologic Pathology: The Prostate. Philadelphia, Pa: Lea and Febiger, 1977, pp 171-197.
  11. Albertsen PC, Hanley JA, Barrows GH, et al.: Prostate cancer and the Will Rogers phenomenon. J Natl Cancer Inst 97 (17): 1248-53, 2005.
  12. Thompson IM, Canby-Hagino E, Lucia MS: Stage migration and grade inflation in prostate cancer: Will Rogers meets Garrison Keillor. J Natl Cancer Inst 97 (17): 1236-7, 2005.
  13. Holmberg L, Bill-Axelson A, Helgesen F, et al.: A randomized trial comparing radical prostatectomy with watchful waiting in early prostate cancer. N Engl J Med 347 (11): 781-9, 2002.
  14. Middleton RG, Thompson IM, Austenfeld MS, et al.: Prostate Cancer Clinical Guidelines Panel Summary report on the management of clinically localized prostate cancer. The American Urological Association. J Urol 154 (6): 2144-8, 1995.
  15. Moul JW: Prostate specific antigen only progression of prostate cancer. J Urol 163 (6): 1632-42, 2000.
  16. Thompson I, Thrasher JB, Aus G, et al.: Guideline for the management of clinically localized prostate cancer: 2007 update. J Urol 177 (6): 2106-31, 2007.
  17. Screening for Prostate Cancer. Rockville, Md: U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, 2011. Available online. Last accessed September 26, 2013.

This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

WebMD Public Information from the National Cancer Institute

Last Updated: September 04, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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