Harvard Perspectives on Prostate Disease

No one-size-fits-all solution

A message from Editor in Chief Marc B. Garnick, M.D.

In the previous issue of Perspectives, we summarized the recent recommendation of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force regarding prostate cancer screening. In short, the panel concluded that doctors should halt PSA screening for men who are 75 or older, as well as those with a life expectancy of less than 10 years.

That might make you think that men younger than 75 should be regularly screened. But the committee did not find enough evidence to assess whether the benefits of PSA testing outweigh the risks in younger, healthier men. Instead, they encouraged men to talk about possible benefits and harms of getting the PSA test before opting for screening. It's no wonder the men I talk to are confused about what to do!

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