Inviting men with no symptoms to a one-off PSA test for prostate cancer does not save lives according to results from the largest ever prostate cancer trial conducted over 10 years by Cancer Research UK-funded scientists and published today (Tuesday) in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).
Researchers at the Universities of Bristol and Oxford found that testing asymptomatic men with PSA detects some disease that would be unlikely to cause any harm but also misses some aggressive and lethal prostate cancers.
This highlights the flaws of a single PSA test as a way to screen for prostate cancer, and shows the need to find more accurate ways to diagnose cancers that need to be treated.
The CAP Trial, which spanned almost 600 GP practices in the UK and included more than 400,000 men aged 50-69, is the largest trial ever to investigate prostate cancer screening. The trial compared 189,386 men who were invited to have a one-off PSA test with 219,439 men who were not invited for screening.
After an average of 10 years follow up, there were 8,054 (4.3%) prostate cancers in the screened group and 7,853 (3.6%) cases in the control group. Crucially, both
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